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Pretreatment and Reaction Capabilities

Lignocellulose Pretreatment and Thermochemical Reaction Capabilities

LORRE has facilities and experts for carrying out lab-scale thermochemical reactions in packed bed batch and flow-through reactors. We routinely conduct liquid hot water and dilute acid pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomass at temperatures up to 260 ˚C with a daily throughput of up to 100g of biomass (dry). In addition, we have the ability to perform liquid-phase thermochemical reactions of biologically-derived molecules (sugars, alcohols, etc.) over solid catalysts or in homogeneous reaction solutions at temperatures up to 260 ˚C. Our HPLC and GC analytical capabilities support measurement of product yields, rates, reaction selectivity, activation energy, and other engineering parameters necessary for reactor and catalyst design and scale-up.


  • The Agricultural and Biological Engineering Department has a well-equipped machine shop capable of fabricating high-pressure fittings and tubular reactors for cellulose pretreatment and aqueous or other solvent thermochemical reactors as needed for the research.
  • High Pressure Reactors: 300 mL and 20 L Autoclave Company high pressure reactors; 2 L Parr high pressure reactor for carrying out processing of biomass materials.
  • Steam Generators: generators capable of generating up to 100 psig steam.
  • Size Attrition Equipment: Laboratory Wiley mill, large-scale refiner (a device that shreds cellulosic materials).
  • Sand Baths: Tecam laboratory scale (approximately 4 L volume) for carrying out high temperature reactions (up to 260 C).
    • Padder: Atlas Laboratory wringer for derivatizing textile fabrics and fibers (threads). 
  • Furnace: high temperature ashing furnace.