Conversion of Rapeseed Cake Into Bio-Fuel in a Batch Reactor: Effect of Catalytic Vapor Upgrading

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The objective of this work is the development of a method for the catalytic conversion of biomass into liquid products, which could be further treated for the production of bio-fuels. Rapeseed cake was used as a source of biomass, while H-ZSM-5 and H-Beta zeolites were used as catalysts. The process was carried out at 400 °C, in a batch reactor with two configurations. In the first configuration, produced vapors were condensed and collected. In the second configuration, a fixed bed catalytic vapor upgrading section was added into the reactor. The conversion of the rapeseed cake resulted in the formation of two liquid phases (an organic and an aqueous phase), gases and a solid residue. The highest organic liquid phase yield was attained on H-ZSM-5 zeolite at the use of the vapor upgrading section. The aqueous phases contained a mixture of water-soluble substances, mainly N-heterocyclic compounds. The catalyst regeneration studies showed that H-ZSM-5 zeolite in both the reactor and the vapor upgrading section was more stable than H-Beta.