An isolated, solvent-extracted lignin from candlenut (Aleurites moluccana) biomass was subjected to catalytic depolymerization in the presence of supercritical methanol, using a range of porous metal oxides derived from hydrotalcite-like precursors. The most effective catalysts in terms of lignin conversion to methanol-soluble products, without char formation, were based on copper in combination with other dopants based on relatively earth-abundant metals. Nearly complete conversion of lignin to bio-oil composed of monomers and low-mass oligomers with high aromatic content was obtained in 6. h at 310. °C using a catalyst based on a Cu- and La-doped hydrotalcite-like precursor. Product mixtures were characterized by NMR spectroscopy, gel permeation chromatography, and GC-MS. © 2014.
- Porous metal oxides
- Supercritical solvents