Biomass Degradation

Catalytic decomposition of hydrogen peroxide is a very powerful oxidation tool, capable of degrading biomass and organic matter.


Plant tissue degradation by advanced oxidation with catalyzed hydrogen peroxide


The following example shows H2O2  treatment of a heavily contaminated water with organic matter and algae. The sample turns into clean water within minutes, with total disinfection and decomposition of the biomass completed within hours.

No adjustment of pH is needed and no harsh or toxic chemicals are used, just hydrogen peroxide and our heterogeneous catalyst, which is inexpensive and reusable.


  Biomass Degradation and Water Purification with Catalyzed Hydrogen Peroxide

Degradation of Cellulose

Biomass is an invaluable source of sustainable energy, which takes advantage of the photolytic abilities of plants.

Plants harness solar energy and transform it into their tissue (while simultaneously consuming carbon dioxide CO2). Biomass can be subsequently used as a source of a sustainable, biomass-derived fuel, for example cellulosic ethanol.

Any type of biomass-derived fuel processing requires preparation and degradation of the biomass, e.g. cellulose. Catalytic treatment with hydrogen peroxide is capable of degrading cellulose into any desired form, and even decomposing it entirely, if needed. The process can be performed at room temperature, without any external energy input. Neutral pH allows to use the degraded cellulose as a feed for further processing, including bio-catalytic production of ethanol.


Degradation of Cellulose by Catalyzed Hydrogen Peroxide 

Processing of Agave leafs - preparation of sizal fibers


Degradation of the biomass in agave leafs: soft plant tissue was removed and cellulose fibers remained after treatment with catalyzed hydrogen peroxide.

No other chemicals or solvents were used,  pH adjustment was not required. After filtering off the catalyst (for reuse) and the mineralized sediment, the remaining  effluent is just clear water without any contaminants or pollutants.

Bleached cell walls 

Advanced oxidation bleaching technique allows for selective removing of soft plant tissue, leaving cellulose-based structure

 Agave leaf cell wall      Bamboo cell wall

  Agave leaf cell wall                                             Bamboo cell wall


Bleached leaf structure

Bleaching and Decomposition of Cotton Cellulose Fibers

Cotton degradation               

Catalytic Decomposition of Cellulose Cotton Fibers by Hydrogen Peroxide

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