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Sustainability 2015, 7(9), 12149-12163; doi:10.3390/su70912149

Sustainable Ethanol Production from Common Reed (Phragmites australis) through Simultaneuos Saccharification and Fermentation

CIRIAF-CRB Section, University of Perugia, Via G.Duranti 67, Perugia 06125, Italy
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Academic Editors: Francesco Asdrubali, Pietro Buzzini and Marc A. Rosen
Received: 8 June 2015 / Revised: 19 August 2015 / Accepted: 24 August 2015 / Published: 2 September 2015
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Abstract

Phragmites australis (common reed) is a perennial grass that grows in wetlands or near inland waterways. Due to its fast-growing properties and low requirement in nutrients and water, this arboreal variety is recognized as a promising source of renewable energy although it is one of the least characterized energy crops. In this experiment, the optimization of the bioethanol production process from Phragmites australis was carried out. Raw material was first characterized according to the standard procedure (NREL) to evaluate its composition in terms of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin content. Common reed was pretreated by steam explosion process at three different severity factor (R0) values. The pretreatment was performed in order to reduce biomass recalcitrance and to make cellulose more accessible to enzymatic attack. After the pretreatment, a water insoluble substrate (WIS) rich in cellulose and lignin and a liquid fraction rich in pentose sugars (xylose and arabinose) and inhibitors were collected and analyzed. The simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) of the WIS was performed at three different solid loadings (SL) 10%, 15%, 20% (w/w). The same enzyme dosage, equal to 20% (g enzyme/g cellulose), was used for all the WIS loadings. The efficiency of the whole process was evaluated in terms of ethanol overall yield (g ethanol/100 g raw material). The maximum ethanol overall yields achieved were 16.56 and 15.80 g ethanol/100 g RM dry basis for sample AP10 and sample AP4.4, respectively. The yields were reached working at lower solid loading (10%) and at the intermediate LogR0 value for the former and at intermediate solid loading (15%) and high LogR0 value for the latter, respectively. View Full-Text
Keywords: steam explosion; Ethanol; simultaneous saccharification and fermentation; Phragmites australis steam explosion; Ethanol; simultaneous saccharification and fermentation; Phragmites australis
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Cotana, F.; Cavalaglio, G.; Pisello, A.L.; Gelosia, M.; Ingles, D.; Pompili, E. Sustainable Ethanol Production from Common Reed (Phragmites australis) through Simultaneuos Saccharification and Fermentation. Sustainability 2015, 7, 12149-12163.

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