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Open AccessArticle

Evaluation of Ionic Liquids as In Situ Extraction Agents during the Alcoholic Fermentation of Carob Pod Extracts

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Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Technical University of Cartagena, Campus Muralla del Mar C/Doctor Fleming s/n, Cartagena, 30202 Murcia, Spain
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Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Chemistry, University of Murcia, 30071 Murcia, Spain
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Fermentation 2019, 5(4), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5040090
Received: 18 July 2019 / Revised: 11 October 2019 / Accepted: 15 October 2019 / Published: 18 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fermentation Process in Biorefinery)
Anhydrous ethanol is a promising alternative to gasoline in fuel engines. However, since ethanol forms an azeotrope with water, high-energy-consumption separation techniques such as azeotropic distillation, extractive distillation, and molecular sieves are needed to produce anhydrous ethanol. This work discusses the potential development of an integrated process for bioethanol production using ionic liquids and Ceratonia siliqua as a carbohydrate source for further fermentation of the aqueous extracts. A four-stage counter-current system was designed to improve the sugar extraction yield to values close to 99%. The alcoholic fermentation of the extracts showed ethanol concentrations of 95 g/L using the microorganism Saccharomyces cerevisae. The production of anhydrous ethanol through extractive distillation with ethylene glycol was simulated using CHEMCAD software, with an energy consumption of 13.23 MJ/Kg of anhydrous ethanol. Finally, several ionic liquids were analyzed and are proposed as potential solvents for the recovery of bioethanol for the design of an integrated extraction–fermentation–separation process, according to their ability to extract ethanol from aqueous solutions and their biocompatibility with the microorganism used in this study. View Full-Text
Keywords: carob pod; bioethanol; extractive distillation; ionic liquids; biocompatibility; liquid–liquid extraction carob pod; bioethanol; extractive distillation; ionic liquids; biocompatibility; liquid–liquid extraction
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Sanchez-Segado, S.; Salar-García, M.J.; Ortiz-Martínez, V.M.; de los Ríos, A.P.; Hernández-Fernández, F.J.; Lozano-Blanco, L.J. Evaluation of Ionic Liquids as In Situ Extraction Agents during the Alcoholic Fermentation of Carob Pod Extracts. Fermentation 2019, 5, 90.

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