Use of Modified Lignocellulosic Butanol Residue in Phenol-Resorcinol-Formaldehyde Polymers

Juan Liu, Zuxin Zhang, Riqing Chen, Yuzhi Xu, Chupeng Wang, Fuxiang Chu


Lignocellulosic butanol residue (BR), obtained as the by-product of lignocellulosic butanol production, was used for the preparation of lignin-based phenol-resorcinol-formaldehyde resins (LPRFRs) by condensation polymerization. The lignin was first phenolated under sodium hydroxide catalysis at 90 to 92 °C at various phenolation times (1.0 to 4.0 h). The structural differences between BR and phenolated BR (PBR) were studied using Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, ultraviolet (UV) spectroscopy, thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and gel permeation chromatography (GPC). The BR phenolated for 3.0 h had high phenol hydroxyl content, low molecular weight, and good thermal stability. The LPRFRs with 30 wt.% BR had the lowest free formaldehyde and phenol. With the substitution of BR for phenol, the hydrophilicity of LPRFRs increased. In addition, the mechanical, fragility, thermal properties, and morphology of lignin-phenol-resorcinol-formaldehyde foams (LPRFFs) were also investigated. The LPRFFs had excellent comprehensive properties when 30 wt.% PBR was substituted for phenol. These experimental findings could provide a new avenue for further study and application of bio-phenol-resorcinol foams.


Lignin phenolation; Lignin-based phenol-resorcinol-formaldehyde resins; Foams; Mechanical Properties; Thermal stability

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