Vanillin Hydrodeoxygenation: Kinetic Modelling and Solvent Effect


Vanillin hydrodeoxygenation was investigated using Pt/C catalyst in the temperature and total pressure ranges of 80–200 °C and 20–30 bar in several solvents, such as tetrahydrofuran, 2-propanol, water and in solventless conditions using 1:1 mass ratio of vanillin to guaiacol. The results revealed that the rate increased with increasing solvent polarity as follows: tetrahydrofuran < 2-propanol < water. The main product was p-creosol with 66% selectivity at complete vanillin conversion in HDO under 30 bar total pressure at 100 °C after 4 h using water as a solvent. In a solventless experiment with 1:1 mass ratio of vanillin–guaiacol as a feedstock only vanillin was transformed to p-creosol with 91% conversion in 4 h at 200 °C under 30 bar total pressure, while guaiacol did not produce any HDO products. Both thermodynamic analysis and kinetic modelling were performed. Vanillin hydrodeoxygenation resulted in formation of p-creosol over Pt/C catalyst using an optimum vanillin initial concentration in water solution. From the industrial point of view vanillin hydrodeoxygenation proceeded rapidly giving high yields of p-creosol in solventless hydrodeoxygenation of vanillin-guaiacol mixture, while guaiacol was not deoxygenated.

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Scheme 1
Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Scheme 2
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8


K :

Rate constant

K 0 j :

Equilibrium constant at standard conditions for reaction j

K eq :

Adsorption equilibrium constant

N :

Moles (mol)

P :

Pressure (bar)

P 0 :

Standard pressure (bar)

R :

Reaction rate

R 2 :

Coefficient of determination

R :

Ideal gas constant (J/K/mol)

T :

Absolute temperature (K)

T 0 :

Absolute standard temperature (K)



ΔG 0 f :

Gibbs free energy of formation at standard conditions (J/mol)

ΔG 0 r :

Gibbs free energy of reaction at standard conditions (J/mol)

ΔG Φ r,j :

Gibbs free energy of reaction at 1 bar and chosen temperature (J/mol)

ΔG r,j :

Gibbs free energy of reaction at a fixed temperature and pressure (J/mol)

ΔH 0 f :

Enthalpy of formation at standard conditions (J/mol)

ΔH 0 r :

Enthalpy of reaction at standard conditions (J/mol)

ρ B :

Catalyst bulk density

θ :

Objective function

ν i,j :

Stoichiometric matrix composed by i components and j reactions (–)


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Correspondence to Dmitry Yu. Murzin.

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Sulman, A., Mäki-Arvela, P., Bomont, L. et al. Vanillin Hydrodeoxygenation: Kinetic Modelling and Solvent Effect. Catal Lett 148, 2856–2868 (2018).

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  • Hydrodeoxygenation
  • Vanillin
  • Kinetic modelling