Evolution of cellulose crystals during prehydrolysis and soda delignification of sugarcane lignocellulose
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This work investigates the evolution of cellulose crystals from sugarcane lignocellulose (bagasse and leaves) submitted to prehydrolysis (hydrothermal, dilute acid, or steam explosion) and soda delignifications. Raw and treated materials are characterized by X-ray diffraction with modeling of area-detector patterns. Three treatment effects are correlated: increase in cellulose content, quantified by strong acid hydrolysis; increase in average cellulose crystallite width, inferred from sharper 200 diffraction peaks; and decrease in crystallite distortion, evidenced by d 200-spacing approaching reference values. Crystal contents measured according to recent developments (in Driemeier and Calligaris, J Appl Cryst 44:184–192, 2011) are compared to cellulose contents. Limitations for this comparison are discussed. Results are consistent with minimum non-crystalline cellulose in raw lignocellulose, and with partial cellulose decrystallization or more defective crystallites in treated materials.
KeywordsCellulose Crystallinity Diffraction Bagasse Pretreatment Hydrothermal
The authors thank Prof. A. A. S. Curvelo for critical reading of the manuscript. Research supported by LNLS—Brazilian Synchrotron Light Laboratory and LNBio—Brazilian Biosciences National Laboratory (project GAR-6293) and by FAPESP (projects 2010/05523-3 and 2010/08691-4).
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