Hydrogen rich gas production by thermocatalytic decomposition of kenaf biomass

Sibel Irmak, Lker Öztürk

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42 Scopus citations


Kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.), a well known energy crop and an annual herbaceous plant grows very fast with low lodging susceptibility was used as representative lignocellulosic biomass in the present work. Thermocatalytic conversions were performed by aqueous phase reforming (APR) of kenaf hydrolysates and direct gasification of solid biomass of kenaf using 5% Pt on activated carbon as catalyst. Hydrolysates used in APR experiments were prepared by solubilization of kenaf biomass in subcritical water under CO2 gas pressure. APR of kenaf hydrolysate with low molecular weight polysaccharides in the presence of the reforming catalyst produced more gas compared to the hydrolysate that had high molecular weight polysaccharides. APR experiments of kenaf biomass hydrolysates and glucose, which was used as a simplest biomass model compound, in the presence of catalyst produced various amounts of gas mixtures that consisted of H2, CO, CO2, CH4 and C2H6. The ratios of H2 to other gases produced were 0.98, 1.50 and 1.35 for 150 °C and 250 °C subcritical water-treated kenaf hydrolysates and glucose, respectively. These ratios indicated that more the degraded organic content of kenaf hydrolysate the better selectivity for hydrogen production. Although APR of 250 °C-kenaf hydrolysate resulted in similar gas content and composition as glucose, the gas volume produced was three times higher in glucose feed. The use of solid kenaf biomass as starting feedstock in APR experiments resulted in less gas production since the activity of catalyst was lowered by solid biomass particles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5312-5317
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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