CHAPTER 15: Biomass-derived Platform Chemicals
Published:20 Oct 2021
This chapter is a contemporary account of the platform molecules that constitute the fundamental building blocks of a future, biobased chemical industry. It compares and contrasts platform molecules and the current petrochemical base chemicals in terms of heteroatom content and chemical functionality. This approach highlights the extraordinary potential that biobased platforms offer the synthetic organic chemist and the biorefinery engineer. A demonstrative list of neoteric platform molecules is included to present a snapshot of the functional diversity available in these building blocks. The connection between the composition of the biomass feedstock and the associated processing technology is delineated, which gives an indication of which feedstocks and which platform molecules are most likely to contribute to sustainability purposes. Finally, the chapter concludes with a shortlist of 12 platform molecules that, in the authors' view, warrant particular attention from the research community in the coming years.