US assisted PL reactor for the production of NL (CNANO, GR)

Cnano’s PL (PL4) will accomplish the formation of stable colloidal suspensions of lignin nanoparticles (NL) in the range of 10 to 500 nm by physical treatment via the means of ultrasonication (US), thus avoiding the need of any additional (and potentially hazardous) chemical pre‐ or post‐treatments. The US treatment will elevate the exploitability of lignin as a preferable nanostructured functional filler (providing enhanced thermal stability, antibacterial and antioxidant properties) in bio-based polymer formulations and compounds. PL4 has the ability to operate at a 30 L batch reactor scale, while also being able to function within a flowing material stream with a throughput rate of approximately 100 L/h. Careful regulation of treatment parameters such as the viscosity of the dispersion (solids concentration) and the desired degree of processing (US amplitude, power, treatment time, temperature) will facilitate the selective control of the nanoparticle size, size-distribution, and chemical characteristics of the resulting NL particles. Subsequently, the aqueous NL dispersions will be subjected to lyophilisation (freeze-drying) in order to receive the NL particles in a dry solid state ready for further downstream utilisation.

pilot lines templates image
pilot lines templates image

When used as a closed loop flowing system, PL4 has an increased volume capacity and treatment efficiency. The continuous material recirculation raises the need to establish a correlation between process parameters, such as US amplitude, treatment temperature and residence time, and the process results (NL particle yield, size and size distribution, chemical functionality). Investments will be done to upscale the material throughput while simultaneously optimising the process conditions of the PL by installing a higher power US probe and by integrating an in-line temperature monitoring system. The process monitoring will be connected to integrated CPI units which provide the option to regulate the process remotely.