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Characterization of the products resulting from ethylene glycol liquefaction of cellulose


The composition of liquefied cellulose in the presence of ethylene glycol (EG) was studied. The liquefied products were fractionated and analyzed with highperformance liquid chromatography and nuclear magnetic resonance. EG-glucosides were detected as the only saccharides and 2-hydroxyethyl levulinate as the highly decomposed compound derived from cellulose. Quantitative analysis of the EG-glucosides and levulinic acid that comes from the levulinate shows the presence of the following mechanism in the EG-liquefaction of cellulose. First, cellulose is degraded and produces considerable amounts of EG-glucosides during the early stage of liquefaction. Then, when liquefaction is prolonged, the glucosides are decomposed, leading to a large quantity of levulinates.


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Correspondence to Tatsuhiko Yamada.

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Yamada, T., Ono, H. Characterization of the products resulting from ethylene glycol liquefaction of cellulose. J Wood Sci 47, 458–464 (2001).

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Key words

  • Liquefaction
  • Ethylene glycol
  • Wood
  • Cellulose
  • NMR