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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Microalga Using Metal Oxide Catalyst

1
Department of Chemical, Energy and Mechanical Technology, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Móstoles, 28933 Madrid, Spain
2
Department of Chemical and Environmental Technology, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Móstoles, 28933 Madrid, Spain
3
Department of Agricultural Mechanisation and Biosystems Engineering, Shoushtar Branch, Islamic Azad University, Daneshgah Blvd., Shoushtar 6451741117, Iran
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Processes 2020, 8(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/pr8010015
Received: 15 November 2019 / Revised: 12 December 2019 / Accepted: 17 December 2019 / Published: 20 December 2019
The yield and composition of the biocrude obtained by hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) of Nannocloropsis gaditana using heterogeneous catalysts were evaluated. The catalysts were based on metal oxides (CaO, CeO2, La2O3, MnO2, and Al2O3). The reactions were performed in a batch autoclave reactor at 320 °C for 10 min with a 1:10 (wt/wt) microalga:water ratio. These catalysts increased the yield of the liquefaction phase (from 94.14 ± 0.30 wt% for La2O3 to 99.49 ± 0.11 wt% for MnO2) as compared with the thermal reaction (92.60 ± 1.20 wt%). Consequently, the biocrude yields also raised in the metal oxides catalysed HTL, showing values remarkably higher for the CaO (49.73 ± 0.9 wt%) in comparison to the HTL without catalyst (42.60 ± 0.70 wt%). The N and O content of the biocrude obtained from non-catalytic HTL were 6.11 ± 0.02 wt% and 10.50 ± 0.50 wt%, respectively. In this sense, the use of the metal oxides decreased the N content of the biocrude (4.62 ± 0.15–5.45 ± 0.11 wt%), although, they kept constant or increased its O content (11.39 ± 2.06–21.68 ± 0.03 wt%). This study shows that CaO, CeO2 and Al2O3 can be promising catalysts based on the remarkable amount of biocrude, the highest values of C, H, heating value, energy recovery, and the lowest content of N, O and S. View Full-Text
Keywords: microalgae; hydrothermal liquefaction; biocrude; metal-oxide catalyst microalgae; hydrothermal liquefaction; biocrude; metal-oxide catalyst
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sánchez-Bayo, A.; Rodríguez, R.; Morales, V.; Nasirian, N.; Bautista, L.F.; Vicente, G. Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Microalga Using Metal Oxide Catalyst. Processes 2020, 8, 15.

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