Special Issue "Biomass Conversion and Green Chemistry in Polymer Science"

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Biomacromolecules, Biobased and Biodegradable Polymers".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 5 January 2023 | Viewed by 4540

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Hu Li
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Green Pesticide and Agricultural Bioengineering, Key Laboratory of Green Pesticide and Agricultural Bioengineering, Ministry of Education, Guizhou University, Guiyang 550025, China
2. State-Local Joint Engineering Laboratory for Comprehensive Utilization of Biomass, Center for R&D of Fine Chemicals, Guizhou University, Guiyang 550025, China
Interests: biomass conversion; bioenergy; environmental remediation; green catalysis; soild waste management
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Junqi Wang
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Human Settlements and Civil Engineering, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710049, China
Interests: biomass/waste utilization; life cycle assessment; techno-economic analysis; pyrolysis; 2D/3D Materials
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Jian He
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Key Laboratory of Hunan Forest Products and Chemical Industry Engineering, Jishou University, Jishou 427000, China
Interests: Biomass conversion; transfer hydrogenation; heterogeneous catalysis
Dr. Hu Pan
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Biological, Chemical Science and Engineering, Jiaxing University, Jiaxing, Zhejiang 314001, China
Interests: Biomass conversion; Heterogeneous catalysis; Sustainable chemistry; Multifunctional catalytic materials

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Lignocellulosic biomass, which is a type of low-cost, widespread, and renewable biopolymer, is the most abundant organic carbon source and has attracted a great deal of interest as a sustainable feedstock for producing valuable chemicals and biofuels in the presence of well-designed catalytic systems. Despite the great potential of bioderived molecule alternatives to petroleum-based products, the recalcitrant and crystalline structure of renewable biopolymers (e.g., chitosan, lipids, microalgae, and macroalgae) and relevant polymeric components (e.g., polysaccharide and lignin units) hinder their accessibility by either reagents or catalysts. In this regard, a great many efforts have been devoted to executing or facilitating biomass depolymerization and further upgrading processes to specific bioproducts via newly developed conversion routes or bio- and chemocatalytic strategies with high-efficiency functional catalytic materials.

 

Apart from renewable biomass-based organic carbon feedstocks, waste resources such as plastics and CO2 are also ideal raw materials for producing small molecules, complex organic compounds, functional materials, and liquid fuels. With respect to both biomass and waste valorization, thermo-, photo-, and electrocatalytic approaches have been demonstrated to be efficient and promising for practical applications. Attention is also placed on the improvement of the eco-friendly and clean characteristics of overall conversion processes as well as the explicit understanding of the involved reaction mechanisms. This Special Issue of Polymers invites contributions addressing recent advances or achievements in biomass and waste valorization, including, e.g., biomass pretreatment and depolymerization methods, catalytic strategies or reaction routes developed for biomass and waste conversion, appropriate design, and preparation of functional catalytic materials or polymers, characterization or analysis techniques, and theoretical calculation/simulation for catalytic mechanism elucidation, green conversion processes exploited for scale-up production, etc. The above list is only indicative and by no means exhaustive; recent research articles and reviews dedicated to the catalytic upgrading of renewable and waste resources are welcome.

 

Prof. Dr. Hu Li
Dr. Junqi Wang
Dr. Jian He
Dr. Hu Pan
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Polymers is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

• Sustainable and biobased polymers
• Biomass conversion
• Bioenergy and biofuels
• Waste valorization
• Green solvents/media
• Bio- and chemocatalytic processes
• Separation, recovery, and recycling
• C1 (CO2) chemistry
• Thermo-, photo-, and electrocatalysis
• Bioderived molecules

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Article
Hierarchical Porous MIL-101(Cr) Solid Acid-Catalyzed Production of Value-Added Acetals from Biomass-Derived Furfural
Polymers 2021, 13(20), 3498; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym13203498 - 12 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 584
Abstract
Considering economic and environmental impacts, catalytic biomass conversion to valuable compounds has attracted more and more attention. Of particular interest is furfural, a versatile biorefinery platform molecule used as a feedstock for the production of fuels and fine chemicals. In this study, the [...] Read more.
Considering economic and environmental impacts, catalytic biomass conversion to valuable compounds has attracted more and more attention. Of particular interest is furfural, a versatile biorefinery platform molecule used as a feedstock for the production of fuels and fine chemicals. In this study, the Cr-based metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) MIL-101 were modified by chlorosulfonic acid, and MIL-101 was changed into a hierarchical MOF structure with smaller particles and lower particle crystallinity by CTAB, which significantly improved the acidic sites of the MOFs. The original and modified MIL-101(Cr) catalysts were characterized by XRD, N2 adsorption-desorption, SEM, TEM, and FT-IR. The effects of different catalysts, reaction temperature, catalyst amount, and alcohol type on the reaction were studied. Under the action of the MOFs catalyst, a new mild route for the condensation of furfural with various alkyl alcohols to the biofuel molecules (acetals) was proposed. The conversion route includes the conversion of furfural up to 91% yield of acetal could be obtained within 1 h solvent-free and in room-temperature reaction conditions. The sulfonic acid-functionalized MIL-101(Cr) is easy to recover and reuse, and can still maintain good catalytic activity after ten runs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Conversion and Green Chemistry in Polymer Science)
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Article
Influence of Home Composting on Tensile Properties of Commercial Biodegradable Plastic Films
Polymers 2021, 13(16), 2785; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym13162785 - 19 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 821
Abstract
In recent years biodegradable plastic films have been increasingly used for various purposes, most often as grocery bags and for collecting bio-waste. Typically, the biodegradation of these films should take place in industrial compost facilities where the biodegradation process occurs under controlled conditions. [...] Read more.
In recent years biodegradable plastic films have been increasingly used for various purposes, most often as grocery bags and for collecting bio-waste. Typically, the biodegradation of these films should take place in industrial compost facilities where the biodegradation process occurs under controlled conditions. Nevertheless, many of these films are often disposed of in home composting bins, so the aim of this study was to examine the course of biodegradation of compostable plastic films under uncontrolled conditions in garden composting sites during a period of four months. Mechanical properties were tested on seven different commercially available biodegradable films and bags that were placed in a garden composting bin from February to May. Both tensile properties and tensile-impact strength showed some unexpected results in terms of increase of the properties after the first, second, and third month for some films and bags. The same unpredictability was seen in FTIR and TG analyses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Conversion and Green Chemistry in Polymer Science)
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Article
Biomethane Yield, Physicochemical Structures, and Microbial Community Characteristics of Corn Stover Pretreated by Urea Combined with Mild Temperature Hydrotherm
Polymers 2021, 13(13), 2207; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym13132207 - 03 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 796
Abstract
The corn stover (CS)’s compact structure makes it challenging for microorganisms to use in anaerobic digestion (AD). Therefore, improving CS biodegradability has become a key focus in AD studies. Methods are being targeted at the pretreatment of CS, combining advanced urea with mild [...] Read more.
The corn stover (CS)’s compact structure makes it challenging for microorganisms to use in anaerobic digestion (AD). Therefore, improving CS biodegradability has become a key focus in AD studies. Methods are being targeted at the pretreatment of CS, combining advanced urea with mild temperature hydrotherm pretreatment to study its effect on promoting the AD process of CS. The biomethane yield, physicochemical structure, and microbial community characteristics were investigated. CS samples were assigned into groups differed by a range of pretreatment times (from 24 to 96 h) and set at a temperature of 50 °C with a 2% urea addition. Results revealed that the 72-h group obtained the highest biomethane yield of 205 mL/g VS−1, volatile solid (VS) and total solid (TS) removal rates of 69.3% and 47.7%, which were 36.7%, 25.3% and 27.5% higher than those of untreated one, respectively. After conducting several analyses, results confirmed the pretreatment as a method for altering CS microstructures benefits biomethane production. The most resounding differences between pretreated and untreated groups were observed within a microbial community, an integral factor for improved AD performance. This study serves to confirm that this specific pretreatment is an effective method for enhancing biomethane production in CS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Conversion and Green Chemistry in Polymer Science)
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Review

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Review
A Review on the Modification of Cellulose and Its Applications
Polymers 2022, 14(15), 3206; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14153206 - 05 Aug 2022
Viewed by 384
Abstract
The latest advancements in cellulose and its derivatives are the subject of this study. We summarize the characteristics, modifications, applications, and properties of cellulose. Here, we discuss new breakthroughs in modified cellulose that allow for enhanced control. In addition to standard approaches, improvements [...] Read more.
The latest advancements in cellulose and its derivatives are the subject of this study. We summarize the characteristics, modifications, applications, and properties of cellulose. Here, we discuss new breakthroughs in modified cellulose that allow for enhanced control. In addition to standard approaches, improvements in different techniques employed for cellulose and its derivatives are the subject of this review. The various strategies for synthetic polymers are also discussed. The recent advancements in polymer production allow for more precise control, and make it possible to make functional celluloses with better physical qualities. For sustainability and environmental preservation, the development of cellulose green processing is the most abundant renewable substance in nature. The discovery of cellulose disintegration opens up new possibilities for sustainable techniques. Based on the review of recent scientific literature, we believe that additional chemical units of cellulose solubility should be used. This evaluation will evaluate the sustainability of biomass and processing the greenness for the long term. It appears not only crucial to dissolution, but also to the greenness of any process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Conversion and Green Chemistry in Polymer Science)
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Review
Functionalization and Antibacterial Applications of Cellulose-Based Composite Hydrogels
Polymers 2022, 14(4), 769; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14040769 - 16 Feb 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1145
Abstract
Pathogens, especially drug-resistant pathogens caused by the abuse of antibiotics, have become a major threat to human health and public health safety. The exploitation and application of new antibacterial agents is extremely urgent. As a natural biopolymer, cellulose has recently attracted much attention [...] Read more.
Pathogens, especially drug-resistant pathogens caused by the abuse of antibiotics, have become a major threat to human health and public health safety. The exploitation and application of new antibacterial agents is extremely urgent. As a natural biopolymer, cellulose has recently attracted much attention due to its excellent hydrophilicity, economy, biocompatibility, and biodegradability. In particular, the preparation of cellulose-based hydrogels with excellent structure and properties from cellulose and its derivatives has received increasing attention thanks to the existence of abundant hydrophilic functional groups (such as hydroxyl, carboxy, and aldehyde groups) within cellulose and its derivatives. The cellulose-based hydrogels have broad application prospects in antibacterial-related biomedical fields. The latest advances of preparation and antibacterial application of cellulose-based hydrogels has been reviewed, with a focus on the antibacterial applications of composite hydrogels formed from cellulose and metal nanoparticles; metal oxide nanoparticles; antibiotics; polymers; and plant extracts. In addition, the antibacterial mechanism and antibacterial characteristics of different cellulose-based antibacterial hydrogels were also summarized. Furthermore, the prospects and challenges of cellulose-based antibacterial hydrogels in biomedical applications were also discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Conversion and Green Chemistry in Polymer Science)
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