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Keywords:

  • alcohols;
  • biomass;
  • oxypropylation;
  • polymers;
  • sustainable chemistry

Abstract

Biomass residues are a potential renewable source for the sustainable production of chemicals, materials, fuels, and energy embodying the so-called biorefinery concept. In this context, agro-forestry and agro-food industry by-products have attracted considerable interest of researchers in academia and industry as a renewable source of polymeric materials. The research developed to date on the valorization of biomass residues by converting them into polyols through oxypropylation is the subject of this review. These bio-based polyols exhibit properties similar to their petrochemical counterparts and, as such, can be used with economical advantage in the production of polyurethanes. The operating conditions of the oxypropylation reaction depend on the biomass and on the desired polyol properties. The discussion of their influence and the economic viability of the process are also presented.