Lignin, the most abundant aromatic biopolymer on Earth, is often considered a biorefinery by-product, despite its potential to be valorized into high-added-value chemicals and fuels. In this work, an integrated superstructure-based optimization model was set up and optimized using mixed-integer non-linear programming for the conversion of technical lignin to three main biobased products: aromatic monomers, phenol-formaldehyde resins, and aromatic aldehydes/acids. Several alternative conversion pathways were simultaneously compared to assess the profitability of lignins-based processes by predicting the performance of technologies with different TRL. Upon employing key technologies such as hydrothermal liquefaction, dissolution in solvent, or high-temperature electrolysis, the technical lignins could have a market value of 200 €/t when the market price for aromatic monomers, resins, and vanillin is at least 2.0, 0.8, and 15.0 €/kg, respectively. When lower product selling prices were considered, the aromatic monomers and the resins were not profitable as target products.

Techno-economic optimization of a process superstructure for lignin valorization

Robinson, Ada Josefina;Barletta, Diego;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Lignin, the most abundant aromatic biopolymer on Earth, is often considered a biorefinery by-product, despite its potential to be valorized into high-added-value chemicals and fuels. In this work, an integrated superstructure-based optimization model was set up and optimized using mixed-integer non-linear programming for the conversion of technical lignin to three main biobased products: aromatic monomers, phenol-formaldehyde resins, and aromatic aldehydes/acids. Several alternative conversion pathways were simultaneously compared to assess the profitability of lignins-based processes by predicting the performance of technologies with different TRL. Upon employing key technologies such as hydrothermal liquefaction, dissolution in solvent, or high-temperature electrolysis, the technical lignins could have a market value of 200 €/t when the market price for aromatic monomers, resins, and vanillin is at least 2.0, 0.8, and 15.0 €/kg, respectively. When lower product selling prices were considered, the aromatic monomers and the resins were not profitable as target products.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11386/4808292
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