Selective production of phenolic monomers via high efficient lignin depolymerization with a carbon based nickel-iron-molybdenum carbide catalyst under mild conditions.

Affiliation

Yan B(1), Lin X(1), Chen Z(1), Cai Q(1), Zhang S(2).
Author information:
(1)Research Center for Biomass Energy, School of Resources and Environmental Engineering, East China University of Science and Technology, 130 Meilong Road, Shanghai 200237, China.
(2)Research Center for Biomass Energy, School of Resources and Environmental Engineering, East China University of Science and Technology, 130 Meilong Road, Shanghai 200237, China. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

Lignin is an abundant renewable source of bio-aromatics and its valorization is of great importance. In this work, an efficient non-precious carbon based metal-Mo2C catalytic system for selective production of phenolic monomers (PMs) from organosolv lignin depolymerization is proposed. With the optimized catalyst of Ni-Fe-Mo2C, 89.56% of liquefaction and 35.53% of PMs yields were achieved under 260 ℃ for 4 h with water-methanol (4:1 v/v) solvent. Characterization of the catalysts shows that the induction of Ni-Fe species was favor for the formation of β-Mo2C, and efficiently promoted the lignin liquefaction. The decoration of Ni/Fe can also change the side chain hydrogenolysis ability of the catalyst and exhibite high yield for 4-ethylphenol (14.77%) production. Methanol, used as co-solvent, was found to play an important role in PMs production and lignin depolymerization. These results demonstrated that the Ni-Fe-Mo2C catalytic system has potential to produce valuable phenolic monomers from lignin under mild conditions.