Comprehensive 3D chromatographic analysis of complex non-volatile bio-component mixtures

03 January 2022 → 02 January 2026
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Analytical separation and detection techniques
  • Engineering and technology
    • General chemical and biochemical engineering not elsewhere classified
lignin depolymerization three dimensional chromatography bio-aromatics Analytical methods
Project description



As lignin is the most widely available sustainable aromatic feedstock, its valorization and particularly its depolymerization into bio-aromatics, has emerged as an important research topic within green chemistry. Lignin is a complex pool of macromolecules with chemical structures and functionalities that depend on many factors. Hence, lignin depolymerization typically involves a vast number of reaction steps and yields complex product mixtures. Currently, the acquisition of an in-depth understanding of the depolymerization mechanisms and the associated kinetics is greatly impeded by the lack of analytical techniques that are able to identify and quantify the entire pool of bio-aromatics. The evolution of the molecular weight distribution can be monitored using gel permeation chromatography (GPC) and the monomers can be quantified via gas chromatography (GC). However, the structures of the non-volatile oligomers are hard to characterize. Therefore, this project aims at the development of a novel three-dimensional chromatographic technique for the comprehensive analysis of complex mixtures containing non-volatile bio-components.