Silicon carbide foam supported ZSM-5 composite catalyst for microwave-assisted pyrolysis of biomass

Nan Zhou, Shiyu Liu, Yaning Zhang, Liangliang Fan, Yanling Cheng, Yunpu Wang, Yuhuan Liu, Paul L Chen, R. R Ruan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Considering a series of issues facing the application of catalysts in large scale catalytic fast pyrolysis systems, a novel composite catalyst of ZSM-5 coatings on SiC foam supports was developed and tested for ex-situ catalytic upgrading of the pyrolytic vapors. Different configurations of catalysts placement were compared and the results showed the composite catalyst could significantly improve the bio-oil quality without significantly reducing the yield. The effect of catalyst to biomass ratio on the product yields and bio-oil composition was studied and the results showed that increasing catalyst to biomass ratio could improve the quality of bio-oil at the cost of its yield. In addition, the composite catalyst can maintain its activity until a catalyst to biomass ratio of 1/10, outperforming ZSM-5 in other configurations reported in literature. Furthermore, the composite catalysts could be regenerated and reused while well preserving its material properties and catalytic activity after seven reaction-regeneration cycles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)257-264
Number of pages8
JournalBioresource Technology
StatePublished - Nov 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This was supported in part by the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources ( LCCMR ), MCES, Xcel energy, UMN MNDrive and Center for Biorefining, National Science Foundation of China ( 21766019 ), The Key Research and Development Program of Jiangxi Province (2017BBF60023). Parts of this work were carried out in the Characterization Facility, University of Minnesota, which receives partial support from NSF through the MRSEC program. Specifically, the authors thank Chris Frethem and Seema Thakral for assistances in the SEM and XRD characterization work, respectively.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Ltd


  • Catalytic fast pyrolysis
  • Composite catalyst
  • HZSM-5
  • Scale-up
  • Silicon carbide foam


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