Andreas Harwardt, Bettina Kollmeier, Korbinian Krämer, Wolfgang Marquardt:
Conceptual process design of a butyl-levulinate production process
In: The 2nd International Symposium on Sustainable Chemical Product and Process Engineering, Hangzhou, China, 09-12.05.2010
Butyl-levulinate has been identified as a promising fuel candidate with high oxygen content. Its combustion in diesel engines yields very low soot and NOx emissions. It can be produced by the esterification reaction of butanol and levulinic acid. Since the equilibrium of esterification limits the conversion in a conventional reactor, reactive distillation can be applied to overcome this limitation. The presence of the high boiling catalyst sulfuric acid requires a further separation step downstream of the reactive distillation column to recover the catalyst for recycle. An economic evaluation based on simulation results indicates that this process has the potential to produce a renewable transportation fuel at reasonable price.
biofuels, conceptual design, reactive distillation, butyl-levulinate