Biomass Conversion and Biorefinery

, Volume 8, Issue 2, pp 317–328 | Cite as

Investigation of the textural and adsorption properties of activated carbon from HTC and pyrolysis carbonizates

  • Catalina Rodríguez CorreaEmail author
  • Chatri Ngamying
  • Dietmar Klank
  • Andrea Kruse
Original Article


Bamboo was converted into a microporous activated carbon (AC) following either a one- or a two-step activation process with KOH. The main objective was to analyze the influence of the carbonization process (pyrolysis and hydrothermal carbonization (HTC)) and mixing method of KOH (dry mixing or impregnation) on the AC textural properties as well as on the adsorption capacity of water-soluble pollutants and hydrogen (H2) storage. The highest AC yields were obtained after a two-step activation process. These ACs presented the largest surface areas (2000–2500 m2 g−1) and the best adsorption capacities not only in aqueous media but also of H2. The type of carbonization process did not have a significant effect on yield and adsorption capacities, but it did affect the surface area and pore size distribution. HTC led to ACs with a larger total pore volume than ACs from pyrolysis, but the microporous surface area was smaller. KOH impregnation led to slightly but significantly higher yields than mixing KOH dry; yet, the textural and adsorption properties were not significantly improved. KOH impregnation led to slightly but significantly higher yields than mixing KOH dry; yet, the surface area and pore size distribution as well as adsorption properties were not significantly improved. H2 adsorption capacity was highest for ACs from impregnated hydrochar, followed closely by ACs from pyrochars.

Graphical abstract


Bamboo Activated carbon Hydrothermal carbonization Pyrolysis Porosity 



The authors would like to thank Dennis Jung and Prof. Hans Piepho for their collaboration with the statistical analysis. Additionally, special thanks to Dr. Thomas Otto and Doreen Neumann-Walter from the Institute of Catalysis Research and Development (IKFT) for measuring some of the N2 isotherms.

Supplementary material

13399_2017_280_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (86 kb)
ESM 1 (PDF 85 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Conversion Technology and LCA of Renewable ResourcesUniversity of Hohenheim, Institute of Agricultural EngineeringStuttgartGermany
  2. 2.Faculty of AgricultureChiang Mai UniversityChiang MaiThailand
  3. 3.Quantachrome GmbH & Co. KGOdelzhausenGermany

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