Theses and Dissertations


Jin Hu

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Yu, Fei

Committee Member

Mlsna, Todd E.

Committee Member

Srinivasan, Radhakrishnan

Committee Member

To, Filip Suminto D.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Biological Engineering

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering


Biomass to Liquids via Fischer-Tropsch synthesis (BTL-FT) is regarded as one of the most promising routes for providing alternative solution to growing demand for energy and environmental protection. In Chapter I, the development and key issues of BTL-FT process (especially Fischer-Tropsch synthesis) were reviewed and identified. In Chapter II, Mo/HZSM-5 catalyst was synthesized using Incipient Wetness Impregnation method and tested in nitrogen rich model bio-syngas. Different operation parameters (temperature, pressure, and GHSV) were tested to investigate their influence on the catalytic performance. Those parameters were found to affect the performance significantly. Liquid samples from conversion were mainly composed of C8 to C10 range hydrocarbons. The catalyst characterization revealed that molybdenum species were well distributed on the catalyst support, while dealumination, agglomeration and coke deposition were observed in spent catalyst. The top layer of the spent catalyst had the most coke deposition. A Three-Dimensionally Ordered Macro-porous (3DOM) Fe based Fischer-Tropsch catalyst was developed using a facile in-situ Nitrate Oxidation-PMMA templating technique in Chapter III. Several techniques (including SEM, BET, TPR, HRTEM, XRD, XPS, and DRIFTS) were combined to characterize the morphology, textural properties and microstructures of 3DOM Fe catalysts at different stages. The effects of bio-syngas composition on carbonaceous species formation, iron phase transformation and catalytic performance were investigated and correlated. A novel hybrid bio-refinery process co-converting biomass and natural gas into liquid fuels via FTS with a CO2 recycle loop was developed, modeled and simulated by using Aspen Plus in Chapter IV. The Aspen Plus model utilized experimental data from the 3DOM Fe catalyst. Economic analysis was performed on different scenarios based on the simulation results to determine profitability of the process. Results indicated that 102.65 t/h gasoline and 22.93 t/h diesel can be produced with the co-processing of 100.00 t/h biomass and 112.3 t/h natural gas using 307.78 t/h of recycled CO2 in the process simulation. The carbon conversion rate was estimated to be 81.23% for the hybrid process. Economic analysis revealed that the process can be profitable when using at least 10.00 t/h biomass and 11.23 t/h natural gas.