Thermolysis of organosolv lignin in supercritical water and supercritical methanol

Chiaki Yokoyama, Kazuhiko Nishi, Akihiko Nakajima, Kazue Seino

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25 Citations (Scopus)


The thermolysis of organosolv lignin in supercritical water and supercritical methanol has been examined to investigate the relations between oil and char yields and reaction conditions. Reactions were carried out at temperatures of 623, 648, 693 K and pressures of 10, 20, 30, 40 MPa for 1 h. It was found that the formation of char is suppressed and reactions for oil production became predominant at lower temperatures and higher pressures. Using the data from elemental analysis and 1H-NMR for the oils, concentrations of 8 types of functional groups were determined from structural characterization analysis. For the oils produced from the reactions in supercritical water, relatively high concentrations of hydroxy groups were observed due to the dominant solvolysis pathway in supercritical water. The oils from supercritical methanol reactions have high aromaticity indicating that the pyrolysis pathway becomes dominant in supercritical methanol. The catalytic activities of Na2CO3 and hydrophilic smectites in supercritical fluid reactions were investigated from the measurements of oil and char yields. Oil and char did not affect the reactions in supercritical methanol. On the other hand, the oil yield increased for the reactions under high pressure conditions in supercritical water.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)250
Number of pages1
JournalSekiyu Gakkaishi (Journal of the Japan Petroleum Institute)
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1998


  • Biomass
  • Lignin
  • Methanol
  • Supercritical fluid
  • Thermolysis
  • Water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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