Conversion of polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) to methyl crotonate for the production of biobased monomers

J. Spekreijse, J.E.L. Le Notre, J.P.M. Sanders, E.L. Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Within the concept of the replacement of fossil with biobased resources, bacterial polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) can be obtained from volatile fatt y acids (VFAs) from agro-food waste streams and used as an intermediate toward attractive chemicals. Here we address a crucial step in this process, the conversion of PHB to methyl crotonate (MC), which can be converted via cross- metathesis w ith ethylene to methyl acrylate and propylene, two important monomers for the plastics industry. The conversion of PHB to MC proceeds via a thermolysis of PHB to crotonic acid (CA), followed by an esterification to MC. At pressures below 18 bar, the thermolysis of PHB to CA is the rate-determining step, where above 18 bar, the esterification of CA to MC becomes rate lim- iting. At 2008C and 18 bar, a full conversion and 60% selectiv ity to MC is obtained. This conversion circumvents processing and application issues of PHB as a polymer and allows PHB to be used as an intermediate to produce biobased chemicals.
Original languageEnglish
Article number42462
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Volume132
Issue number35
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • gas-chromatographic analysis
  • thermal-degradation
  • poly(-(d)-beta-hydroxybutyric acid)
  • quantitative-analysis
  • abiotic hydrolysis
  • activated-sludge
  • molecular-weight
  • polyhydroxyalkanoates
  • poly(3-hydroxybutyrate)
  • alkaline

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