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Sustainable production of glucaric acid from corn stover via glucose oxidation: an assessment of homogeneous and heterogeneous catalytic oxidation production routes

Thaore, Vaishali B., Armstrong, Robert D., Hutchings, Graham J., Knight, David W., Chadwick, David and Shah, Nilay 2019. Sustainable production of glucaric acid from corn stover via glucose oxidation: an assessment of homogeneous and heterogeneous catalytic oxidation production routes. Chemical Engineering Research and Design 10.1016/j.cherd.2019.10.042
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Abstract

Glucaric acid is being used increasingly as a food additive, corrosion inhibitor, in deicing, and in detergents, and is also a potential starting material for the production of adipic acid, the key monomer for nylon-66. This work describes a techno-economic analysis of a potential bio-based process for the production of pure glucaric acid from corn stover (biomass). Two alternative routes for oxidation of glucose to glucaric acid are considered: via heterogeneous catalytic oxidation with air, and by homogeneous glucose oxidation using nitric acid. Techno-economic and lifecycle assessments (TEA, LCA) are made for both oxidation routes and cover the entire process from biomass to pure crystalline glucaric acid that can be used as a starting material for the production of valuable chemicals. This is the first TEA of pure glucaric acid production incorporating ion exchange and azeotropic evaporation below 50 °C to avoid lactone formation. The developed process models were simulated in Aspen Plus V9. The techno-economic assessment shows that both production routes are economically viable leading to minimum selling prices of glucaric acid of ∼ $2.53/kg and ∼ $2.91/kg for the heterogeneous catalytic route and the homogeneous glucose oxidation route respectively. It is shown that the heterogeneous catalytic oxidation route is capable of achieving a 22% lower environmental impact than the homogeneous glucose oxidation route. Opportunities for further improvement in sustainable glucaric acid production at industrial scale are identified and discussed.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: In Press
Schools: Chemistry
Cardiff Catalysis Institute (CCI)
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0263-8762
Funders: EPSRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 5 November 2019
Date of Acceptance: 28 October 2019
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2019 12:13
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/126593

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