Bimetallic Ni-Re catalysts for the efficient hydrodeoxygenation of biomass-derived phenols

Cheol Woo Park, Jong Wha Kim, Han Ung Kim, Young Kwon Park, Su Shiung Lam, Jeong Myeong Ha, Jungho Jae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The development of non–noble metal–based catalysts for the hydrodeoxygenation (HDO) upgrading of biomass pyrolysis oils is crucial for realizing the cost-effective biofuel production. In this paper, we report on the enhanced HDO activity of the rhenium-promoted nickel catalysts (Ni-Re) for the HDO of a pyrolysis oil model compound, guaiacol. The catalyst screening studies revealed that the Ni-Re displayed a considerably higher HDO activity than other monometallic (Ni, Re, Cu, Co) and bimetallic catalysts (Cu-Re, Co-Re), highlighting its unique catalytic property. In order to optimize the catalytic activity and reveal the structure–activity relationship of the Ni-Re catalysts, the effects of the Ni/Re ratio and type of support (SiO2, TiO2, and ZrO2) on the catalyst structure and HDO activity were investigated in detail. The results showed that the addition of rhenium to nickel altered both geometric and electronic structures of nickel significantly. The Ni-Re/SiO2 catalyst with a Ni/Re ratio of 0.315 achieved ~95% yield of the desired deoxygenation product, cyclohexane, at 523 K and 30 bar-H2 after 5 hours. Novelty Statement: The upgrading of biomass pyrolysis oils to hydrocarbon fuels oftentimes requires the use of noble metal catalysts and harsh reaction conditions (e.g., high H2 pressure), all of which greatly increase the process cost. In this work, a highly active and nonprecious metal–based catalyst, bimetallic Ni-Re/SiO2, is developed for the cost-effective upgrading of biomass-derived phenols to deoxygenated hydrocarbon fuels at low temperature and low pressure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16349-16361
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Energy Research
Issue number11
StatePublished - Sep 2021


  • bimetallic
  • biomass
  • hydrocarbon fuels
  • hydrodeoxygenation
  • nickel-rhenium


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