Lignin oxidation mechanisms under oxygen delignification conditions. Part 1: Results from direct analyses

Anna Kalliola (Corresponding Author), S. Kuitunen, Tiina Liitiä, Stella Rovio, Taina Ohra-aho, T. Vuorinen, Tarja Tamminen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Oxidation of softwood and hardwood kraft lignins was observed under conditions of oxygen delignification (90°C and 110°C; 0.6 and 0.9 MPa) as a function of time by means of a number of analysis techniques and quantitative information was obtained on the degradation and formation of various compounds and structures. The decrease in reactor pressure was monitored during a 4-h reaction period. During the first 60 min, lignin reactivity was high, while a very intense stage took place during the first 20 min. The reactions decelerated after the first 60 min and after 120 min the reactions did not significantly advance. The oxygen consumption after 4-h reaction was 1.3–1.5 mole O2 per 1 mole lignin depending on the conditions. In the first 20 min, 50%–60% of the oxygen was consumed and the consumption increased only slightly after 60 min. At 90°C, the changes in all observed quantities were smaller throughout the whole 4-h reaction period than at 110°C. Under the studied conditions, increasing the reaction temperature, rather than the pressure, had primary significance in the increasing rate of lignin degradation. Hardwood kraft lignin was more reactive than softwood kraft lignin. The results obtained in this study are the basis for the development of a mechanistic model for the oxygen delignification process of pulps to be published in subsequent papers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)567-574
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2011
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed
Event11th European Workshop on Lignocellulosics and Pulp, EWLP 2010 - Hamburg, Germany
Duration: 16 Aug 201019 Aug 2010
Conference number: 11


  • Kraft lignin
  • lignin
  • modeling
  • oxidation
  • oxygen
  • oxygen consumption

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