Bioacrylic Acid

Currently, more than 3 Mton of acrylic acid as a monomer for super absorbent polymers (SAPs) and other applications are annually produced globally. The classical propylene process is based on the gas phase oxidation via acrolein to acrylic

The Consumption For Acrylic Acid

Glycerol

Figure 12.6 The 12 proposed sugar-based chemical building blocks [23].

Glycerol

Figure 12.6 The 12 proposed sugar-based chemical building blocks [23].

acid. Several new bio-based production routes are becoming available. Carbohydrates could be converted via fermentation to lactic acid, 3-HP or to 3-hydroxypro-pionaldehyde (3-HPA) and finally into acrylic acid in consecutive catalytic steps. Lactic acid and 3-HP are catalytically dehydrated directly to acrylic acid; 3-HPA is catalytically dehydrated to acrolein and only then oxidized to acrylic acid. Glycerol as a by-product from biodiesel production could also be used in a two step catalytic process; first dehydrated to acrolein and then oxidized to acrylic acid.

Nexant and Novozymes predict the starch-based acrylic acid process to be competitive when crude oil prices exceed 65 $/bbl. It could already be competitive using Brazilian sucrose at a crude oil price of 45 $/bbl, which correspond to a sucrose price of approx. 9 <£/lb [24]. On the technical side, further microbial development is required to obtain the desired metabolic pathway in a highly cost and energy efficient system.

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