Characterization of Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Food

Open Access
Berquist, Zachary J
Area of Honors:
Chemical Engineering
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Phillip E Savage, Thesis Supervisor
  • Wayne Roger Curtis, Honors Advisor
  • HTL
  • hydrothermal liquefaction
  • fuel
  • food
  • food waste
  • waste
  • bio-oil
Three types of food, kale, potato, and tuna fish, were treated at hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) conditions. Each individual food was reacted individually with water at temperatures of 275, 300, and 325 °C and holding times of 5, 15, and 30 minutes. Kale, potato, and tuna yielded bio-oil averages of 14.0%, 9.0%, and 27.8 % by mass, respectively. The solid phase yields corresponded to 25.0%, 65%, and 2.0%, respectively. The average elemental composition of all the bio-oils was approximately 69% C, 8% H, 5% N, 1% S, and the balance oxygen amongst other species. The bio-oil and aqueous products for each food were analyzed via GC-MS, and NMR. The main products of the bio-oil phase were large carboxylic acids, as well as large heteroaromatic compounds.