Renewable Levulinic Acid Using An Ecofriendly Catalyst

    Project Code: 295
    Levulinic acid is basically obtained from petrochemical refinery. However, the conversion route is complex and costly. Alternatively, levulinic acid can be prepared from biomass derived carbohydrate. This project presents a new process for biomass conversion to levulinic acid under mild conditions is developed by catalytic hydrolysis using non -toxic hybrid catalyst in ionic liquid.
    By Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
Project Overview

This technology is an alternative method to produce levulinic acid from renewable resource instead of from petrochemical resource. Hybrid catalyst in ionic liquid for biomass conversion to levulinic acid is an eco-friendly system. The hybrid Fe/HY zeolite is an excellent catalyst for levulinic acid production.

The levulinic acid production process is a sustainable and environmentally friendly system.  The renewable waste biomass is used as raw material and the catalyst used is less toxic compared to the conventional catalyst, H2SO4. Besides, the proposed hybrid catalyst can be reused in several subsequent cycles. The use of waste biomass as raw materials can reduce the overall cost up to 50%. Thus, lower price of levulinic acid can be offered. The main supplier of levulinic acid worldwide are China, Europe, and US. If this project can be implemented in Malaysia, the dependability on the imported levulinic acid can be reduced.