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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Stephen Gent


Fast pyrolysis is one potential method for the conversion of organic industrial and agricultural residues into useable chemicals, fuels and energy. In this research, the fast pyrolysis of organosolv lignin was performed in batches using a laboratory scale fluidized bed reactor. Fractional condensation of the bio-oil vapors was conducted using a series of cyclonic condensers at different temperatures and an electrostatic precipitator at room temperature. Liquid bio-oil yields were measured after each experiment. Multiple chemical and physical properties were measured within the first 24 hours, one month and three months of production to study the initial and aging characteristics of each bio-oil sample. Carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and oxygen content (CHN/O), higher heating value (HHV), total acid number (TAN) and water content were measured for the lignin and bio-oil samples. The bio-oil viscosity and shear strain characteristics were also measured. Water content increased as the condensation temperature decreased. Higher water contents proved to have higher oxygen contents, higher TAN, lower viscosity and lower HHV. Bio-oil aging was most clearly seen by an increase in viscosity over time.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Biomass energy
Biomass conversion


Includes bibliographical references (pages 142-147)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University



Rights Statement

In Copyright