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Microwave-mediated Pyrolysis of Biomass

M.J. Gronnow, V.L. Budarin, J. Fan, P.S. Shuttleworth, D.J. MacQuarrie, J.H. Clark
Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence, UK

Keywords: biomass, biomass conversion, bioenergy carriers, biochar, bio-oil, microwave, pyrolysis


Biomass can be seen as the oil well of the future; a renewable, widely distributed resource that should be increasingly exploited for the production of heat and power, liquid fuels as well as chemicals and materials with substantial environmental, economic and social benefits. One method by which the bio-energy carriers and chemicals can be obtained is through pyrolysis. Pyrolysis is a feedstock agnostic technique capable of deconstructing biopolymers into more useful chemical, gas, bio-oil and bio-char products. This technology may increase the applicability of bio-renewables in power generation, transport fuels and chemicals for the growing sustainable market. Using microwave mediated pyrolysis we have found a number of advantages over conventional pyrolysis methods such as tuneability, lower process temperature and bio-oils with lower water and acid content.
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