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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published online by De Gruyter September 5, 2022

A comprehensive review on catalytic etherification of glycerol to value-added products

Anuj Bhargava , Shraddha Shelke , Mohammed Dilkash , Nivedita S. Chaubal-Durve , Pravin D. Patil ORCID logo , Shamraja S. Nadar , Deepali Marghade and Manishkumar S. Tiwari ORCID logo EMAIL logo


The increase in biodiesel production has resulted in the oversupply of glycerol into the market. Purified and processed glycerol has found many direct applications in pharmaceuticals, food, etc. However, the cost of processing and market value of processed glycerol has driven the research of direct utilization of crude glycerol to industrially essential chemicals. Various methods and research have been devoted to using glycerol to produce value-added products separately. Glycerol can undergo several transformation reactions like hydrogenation, oxidation, alcoholysis, and etherification. Etherification of glycerol can be divided into three main reactions: self-etherification, using alcohol, and olefins and these products have vast applications such as fuel additives, plasticizer, etc. The current review presents a comprehensive summary of glycerol etherification to value-added products and their applications. The catalytic system developed along with reaction conditions and the factors responsible for the better activity is also discussed. Overall, the review presents a detailed discussion on the catalytic system developed, the utilization of different alcohols and olefins, and the application of products. Moreover, the environmental and economic aspects of the etherification of glycerol via various conversion routes while assessing the process parameters needs to be tackled to attain wider adoption of the process.

Corresponding author: Manishkumar S. Tiwari, Department of Chemical Engineering, SVKM’S NMIMS Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management & Engineering, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400056, India, E-mail:


The authors gratefully thank and dedicate this work to Hon. Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, whose ideas, thoughts, and vision ignited us and inspired us to move in the research field.

  1. Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

  2. Research funding: None declared.

  3. Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare no conflicts of interest regarding this article.


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Received: 2021-11-10
Accepted: 2022-06-15
Published Online: 2022-09-05

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