2017 Volume 96 Issue 8 Pages 279-284
Oil palm fronds (OPF) are potential resources for production of biomass-based chemicals such as furfural, levulinic acid, and 5-HMF due to its large abundance. Although there are various conventional methods for biomass conversion, they suffer from low yields as well as extreme reaction severity due to the usage of mineral acids as catalyst. A new method using subcritical alcohol can be an alternative. Hence, the aim of this study is to determine the feasibility of using subcritical alcohol for furfural production from OPF. The study will also determine the effect of reaction parameters such as reaction temperature, time, and types of alcohol towards the yield. From the study, it is concluded that high furfural yield can be achieved at milder temperature and moderate reaction time under subcritical conditions. The yield obtained is comparable with other conventional methods indicating that subcritical alcohol technology has the potential for furfural production.