The mechanisms and kinetics studies of the formation of levoglucosan and formaldehyde from anhydroglucose radical have been carried out theoretically in this paper. The geometries and frequencies of all the stationary points are calculated at the B3LYP/6-31+G(D,P) level based on quantum mechanics, Six elementary reactions are found, and three global reactions are involved. The variational transition-state rate constants for the elementary reactions are calculated within 450–1500 K. The global rate constants for every pathway are evaluated from the sum of the individual elementary reaction rate constants. The first-order Arrhenius expressions for these six elementary reactions and the three pathways are suggested. By comparing with the experimental data, computational methods without tunneling correction give good description for Path1 (the formation of levoglucosan); while methods with tunneling correction (zero-curvature tunneling and small-curvature tunneling correction) give good results for Path2 (the first possibility for the formation of formaldehyde), all the test methods give similar results for Path3 (the second possibility for the formation of formaldehyde), all the modeling results for Path3 are in good agreement with the experimental data, verifying that it is the most possible way for the formation of formaldehyde during cellulose pyrolysis.
- rate constant
- cellulose pyrolysis