Food Waste to Energy: Leveraging Catalytic Hydrothermal Liquefaction
Homogeneous catalysts have been utilized with HTL, however, pose process complexity and expense with separation and neutralization. Recently, solid catalysts, with acid- base characteristics have been used successfully with in-situ upgrading of food waste to bio-oil. [2,3]. Hydroxyapatite is a crystalline mineral found naturally in bones and makes an attractive catalyst due to its tunable acid-base sites and potentially renewable sources. This relatively inexpensive catalyst has preliminarily shown to result in the highest oil yield from food waste. In this work, a near supercritical liquid phase reactor is used with a food waste/catalyst slurry to drive the complex reactions. A bio-oil is generated with higher heating values approaching the range of diesel fuel and the catalyst shows excellent hydrothermal stability and regeneration. Additionally, discussion of producing bio-oil in a flow-based system will be discussed.