Effect of Extrusion Pretreatment on Enzymatic Hydrolysis of Miscanthus for the Purpose of Ethanol Production

Vanja Jurisic, James L. Julson, Tajana Kricka, Duška Curic, Neven Voca, Chinnadurai Karunanithy


Lignocellulosic biomass can be converted to energy via several routes. One of them is hydrolysis to sugars with subsequent transformation to fuels and chemicals. Due to the crystalline structure of lignocellulose, pretreatment is a prerequisite to achieving increased enzymatic hydrolysis’ rates. The objective of this study was to determine the optimum extrusion operating conditions for glucose and xylose production from Miscanthus. Extrusion was conducted in a high shear extruder (single screw type) with compression ratio 3:1. Barrel temperature and screw speed, along with sample moisture content and particle size were the parameters evaluated using Response surface methodology (RSM). Conversion rate to glucose and xylose was monitored after enzymatic hydrolysis with low enzyme loadings (5 FPU g-1 of cellulase complex and 18 CBU g-1 of B-glucosidase). The optimum conditions for the glucose production (3.63 g L-1) were: barrel temperature 150 °C, screw speed 2.5 Hz, moisture content 20% and particle size 2 mm; the optimum conditions for the xylose production (0.78 g L-1) were: barrel temperature 150 °C, screw speed 1.67 Hz, moisture content 15% and particle size 2 mm. Hence, under controlled conditions, extrusion resulted in better digestibility of Miscanthus and as such it can be utilized as a source of glucose and xylose in ethanol production.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5539/jas.v7n11p132

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