Many studies have developed simulation models of bio-based process for production of liquid transportation fuels (bio-gasoline and biodiesel) from lignocellulosic biomass (containing cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin) and conducted economic analysis of the process. However, because of a sharp decrease in the price of crude oil based liquid transportation fuels in entire world today, lignocellulosic biofuels process cannot yet compete with the crude oil based process. Alternatively, production of value-added chemicals instead of biofuels has been considered as a viable option using lignocellulosic biomass. In this study we develop a catalytic process and perform an economic analysis for production of 1,4-pentanediol from lignocellulosic biomass. 1,4-pentanediol was used in the preparation of poly(ortho ester). In the process, the cellulose and hemicellulose are simultaneously converted to levulinic acid (LA) using γ-valerolactone (GVL) as a solvent. The LA is then converted to GVL in the presence of GVL and subsequently to 1,4-pentandiol. The simulation models of bio-based process are developed using ASPEN Plus simulator. Moreover, in order to reduce the total process energy requirements, heat integration of the process has conducted using Aspen Energy Analyzer. Our energy analysis shows that the total energy requirements could be satisfied from combustion of the biomass residues (lignin). Our economic analysis shows that minimum selling price of 1,4-pentanediol is $1.57 per kg which is compete with the market price of crude oil based one.
Papers presented to the 12th International Conference on Heat Transfer, Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics, Costa de Sol, Spain on 11-13 July 2016.