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Catalytic production of furfural by pressurized liquid water liquefaction of flax straw
- Jaafari, Laila, Ibrahim, Hussameldin, Jaffary, Bander, Idem, Raphael
- Renewable energy 2019 v.130 pp. 1176-1184
- Lewis acids, acidity, activation energy, aluminum oxide, catalysts, flax, furfural, liquefaction, liquids, models, renewable energy sources, straw, temperature
- In this study, the throughput and kinetics of furfural production by the liquefaction of wet flax straw was conducted. The reaction was carried out in the temperature range of 200–325 °C, pressure of 0–60 bar, retention time in the range of 0–120 min, catalyst amount of 0.5–1.5 g, and a flax straw mass fraction of 10% using three types of solid acid catalysts: γ–alumina, H-ZSM-5, and silica-alumina. The results show that the highest yield of furfural was obtained using γ-alumina catalyst of weight of 1 g and the highest conversion of 66% at 325 °C. It was found that the acidity of the catalyst is key to enhance the production of furfural with a direct correlation with the number of the Lewis acid sites. The catalysts in order of the number of Lewis acid sites was found to be γ–alumina > H-ZSM-5 > silica-alumina. The kinetic data were also developed using an empirical rate model. The apparent activation energy was found to be 9.46 kJ/mol and the reaction order was 2.0. Also, the model-predicted rate showed a good agreement with the experimental rates with more than 91% accuracy.