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Eco-compatible syntheses of bio-based solvents for the paint and coating industry

Guzman Barrera, Nydia Ileana. Eco-compatible syntheses of bio-based solvents for the paint and coating industry. PhD, Sciences des Agroressources, Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse, 2018

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Abstract

Global solvent production accounts for about 28 million tonnes, including 5 million tonnes in Europe. The paint and coating industry is the main consumer (46% of the solvents produced). In this sector, the most used solvents are ethyl acetate, butyl acetate and methyl ethyl ketone. These molecules are currently synthesized industrially from petrochemical substrates in the presence of homogeneous catalysts and under energy-consuming conditions. In order to reduce the environmental impact of paints and coatings, the substitution of these fossil-based solvents by their bio-based equivalents has been studied in the framework of the European project ECOBIOFOR (FP7/2007-2013/Grant Agreement no 605215), in which this thesis work was inscribed. Thus, the objective of this thesis was to develop production processes for these three solvents that would start from renewable synthons and would be simple to implement, inexpensive and respectful of the principles of green chemistry. For the production of ethyl and butyl acetates, two synthetic routes have been studied in the presence of an ion exchange resin as a heterogeneous catalyst. The first route uses acetic acid and the corresponding bio-based alcohol (ethanol or butan-1-ol); the second involves acetic anhydride instead of acetic acid. Kinetic and thermodynamic studies have led to select the most efficient resin and the most suitable reaction conditions. This study has finally allowed to propose an efficient and innovative coproduction process for the two targeted acetates in which their purification is facilitated, the production of waste and co-products is reduced and the recycling of the resin is possible. The evaluation of the performance of the synthesized acetates in nitrocellulose lacquer and polyurethane varnish formulations has shown that these molecules meet the specifications in terms of drying, viscosity, film formation, gloss and adhesion. Finally, the environmental benefit of the co-production process was highlighted by the calculation of green metrics and the life cycle assessment (LCA) of the produced esters. Furthermore, the influence of the origin of alcohols (bio-based or petrochemical) on the environmental impact was evaluated. The impact on climate change is reduced through the use of bio-sourced synthons. For the synthesis of methyl ethyl ketone, we decided to study the decarboxylation reaction of levulinic acid, which is a bio-based platform molecule available and inexpensive. Unlike the main industrial process, which relies on the dehydrogenation of butan-2-ol from fossil origin, the method developed in this work uses conditions that are more respectful of the environment since the reaction is carried out in water in the presence of potassium persulfate and a silver salt at a moderate temperature (100°C). The evaluation of the role of each of the reagents allowed us to propose a complex reaction mechanism for this reaction. The study of the evolution of the solid phase species carried out through various spectroscopic analyzes (SSNMR, XRD, XPS, AES and SEM) made it possible to highlight the species involved in the decarboxylation and finally to propose a method to obtain high conversions and yields.

Item Type:PhD Thesis
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Institution:Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - Toulouse INP (FRANCE)
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Research Director:
Thiebaud-Roux, Sophie and Vedrenne, Emeline
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Deposited On:06 Jan 2020 14:01

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