Upgrading of pyrolysis oil vapors requires a catalytic reactor able to treat high reactant flow rates without generating a large pressure drop. Therefore, monolithic catalysts appear as good candidates for this purpose. In this contribution, low-surface-area Inconel monoliths were coated with in-situ-grown carbon nanofibers and subsequently impregnated with catalytic species (Pt and Sn) both as monometallic and bimetallic particles. These monoliths were tested for the deoxygenation of guaiacol and anisole (products lignin pyrolysis), two of the most deactivating compounds present in pyrolysis bio-oil. The main products obtained with these feeds were phenol and benzene. Coating with carbon nanofibers provided increased surface area and anchoring sites for the active species (Pt, Sn), thus increasing the yield of desired products. The bimetallic Pt/Sn catalyst have shown the highest activity and stability compared to monometallic Pt and Sn catalysts. These tests indicate that monoliths of Pt/Sn CNF-Inconel are potential catalysts for the upgrading of lignin fractions present in bio-oil.
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