(199k) Selecting Solvents for Lignin Value Prior to Pulping

Bommarius, A. S., Georgia Institute of Technology
Kwok, T. T., Georgia Institute of Technology
Luettgen, C. O., Georgia Institute of Technology
Realff, M., Georgia Institute of Technology
Solubilization of lignin and its subsequent valorization are the new frontier for chemicals and products from renewables. Lignin valorization enables favorable economics for a biorefinery, but the efficacy of an organic solvent must be paired with a set of economic and process-based considerations. We describe a methodology for selecting organic solvents for biomass treatment with a specific focus on lignin value prior to pulping (LVPP), a next-generation pulping system. For treatments that do not fiberize or solubilize biomass, we describe elimination and selection criteria that provide a directed search and validation of viable organic solvents. We highlight the economic drivers behind the environmental, process, thermodynamic, and efficacy criteria.