274116 Adsorptive Removal of HMF From Fructose/DMSO Mixtures On Porous Carbons
5-Hydroxymethyl furfural (HMF) is considered to be an important precursor in producing a range of biomass-derived chemicals. In aqueous media, the yield of HMF from fructose dehydration is low due to its rehydration to levulinic acid and formic acid and parallel reactions of fructose to products other than HMF. A well-known solvent that allows for highly selective fructose dehydration to HMF is dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO). However, the corresponding disadvantage is concerned with separation of HMF from DMSO due to the high boiling point of DMSO which poses a challenge in the low cost separation of HMF as evaporation would be energy intensive.
Here, we investigate the room temperature separation of HMF from DMSO for a cost effective recovery of the product from the reaction mixture that contains unreacted fructose. Various carbon materials were tested as selective sorbents capable of separating HMF from DMSO. For all carbons tested, BP2000 and Norit1240 exhibit high capacity for HMF. Depending on relative concentrations, HMF/fructose separation factors up to 45 for BP2000 and 13 for Norit1240 were obtained. Under certain conditions, by increasing the concentration of fructose in the solution, HMF adsorption increased significantly. Adsorption experiments were performed in both batch and fixed-bed column systems. The granular activated carbons preserved their shape and were easily recovered.