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Esterification of bio-oil from mallee (Eucalyptus loxophleba ssp. gratiae) leaves with a solid acid catalyst: Conversion of the cyclic ether and terpenoids into hydrocarbons.

Bioresource technology (2012-09-04)
Xun Hu, Richard Gunawan, Daniel Mourant, Yi Wang, Caroline Lievens, Weerawut Chaiwat, Liping Wu, Chun-Zhu Li
ABSTRACT

Bio-oil from pyrolysis of mallee (Eucalyptus loxophleba ssp. gratiae) leaves differs from that obtained with wood by its content of cyclic ethers, terpenoids and N-containing organic compounds. Upgrading of the leaf bio-oil in methanol with a solid acid catalyst was investigated and it was found that the N-containing organics in the bio-oil lead to deactivation of the catalyst in the initial stage of exposure and have to be removed via employing high catalyst loading to allow the occurrence of other acid-catalysed reactions. Eucalyptol, the main cyclic ether in the bio-oil, could be converted into the aromatic hydrocarbon, p-cymene, through a series of intermediates including α-terpineol, terpinolene, and α-terpinene. Various steps such as ring-opening, dehydration, isomerisation, and aromatization were involved in the conversion of eucalyptol. The terpenoids in bio-oil could also be converted into aromatic hydrocarbons that can serve as starting materials for the synthesis of fine chemicals, via the similar processes.

MATERIALS
Product Number
Brand
Product Description

Sigma-Aldrich
Eucalyptol, 99%
Supelco
Eucalyptol, analytical standard
Supelco
1,8-Cineole, primary reference standard
Sigma-Aldrich
Eucalyptol, natural, ≥99%, FCC, FG
Cineole, European Pharmacopoeia (EP) Reference Standard
Supelco
Eucalyptol, certified reference material, TraceCERT®