Hydrocarbon derived from fast pyrolysis of plantation wood is a potential feedstock for the production of transportation fuels. Unfortunately, the cost to produce and upgrade this feedstock is highly uncertain, and its current technological state is not competitive with crude oil. Additional R&D will be needed to achieve the significant cost reductions required for competitiveness. Significant technical hurdles must be overcome to achieve a commercially ready, cost competitive technology. This paper identifies the most promising areas for the needed future research. Identification of a stable upgrading catalyst, definition of the maximum level of oxygen that can be tolerated by the existing refining infrastructure, and improved oxygen removal during the pyrolysis step emerge as the most prospective research areas.
Arbogast, S., Bellman, D., Paynter, J. D., & Wykowski, J. (2013). Advanced biofuels from pyrolysis oil? Opportunities for cost reduction. Fuel Processing Technology, 106, 518-525. doi:10.1016/j.fuproc.2012.09.022