Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology

, Volume 77, Issue 1–3, pp 19–34 | Cite as

Alkaline and peracetic acid pretreatments of biomass for ethanol production

  • Lincoln C. TeixeiraEmail author
  • James C. Linden
  • Herbert A. Schroeder


Prehydrolysis with dilute acid and steam explosion constitute the most promising methods for improving enzymatic digestibility of biomass for ethanol production. Despite world wide acceptance, these methods of pretreatment are quite expensive considering costs for the reactor, energy, and fractionation. Using peracetic acid is a lignin-oxidation pretreatment with low-energy input by which biomass can be treated in a silo-type system without need for expensive capitalization. Experimentally, ground hybrid poplar and sugar cane bagasse are placed in plastic bags and a peracetic acid solution is added to the biomass in different concentrations based on ovendried biomass. The ratio of solution to biomass is 6∶1 and a 7-d storage period at ambient temperature (20°C) has been used. As an auxiliary method, a series of pre-pretreatments using stoichiometri camounts of sodium hydroxide and ammonium hydroxide based on 4-methyl-glucuronic acid and acetyl content in the biomass are performed before addition of peracetic acid. The basic solutions are added to the biomass in a ratio of 14∶1 solution to biomass, and mixed for 24 h at the same ambient temperature. Biomass is filtered and washed to a neutral pH before peracetic acid addition. The aforementioned procedures give high xylan content substrates as a function of the selectivity of peracetic acid for lignin oxidation and the mild conditions of the process. Consequently, xylanase/β-glucosidase combinations were more effective than cellulase preparations in hydrolyzing these materials. The pretreatment efficiency was evaluated through enzymatic hydrolysis and simultaneous saccharification and cofermentation (SSCF) tests. Peracetic ac treatment improves enzymatic digestibility of hybrid poplar and sugar cane bagasse with no need of high temperatures. Alkaline treatments are helpful in reducing peracetic acid requirements in the pretreatment.

Index Entries

Hybrid poplar sugar cane bagasse peracetic acid enzymatic hydrolysis SSCF Zymomonas mobilis ethanol fuel 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Myung, K. H. and Kennelly, J. J. (1992), AJAS 5(4), 635–641.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Farid, M. A., Shaker, H. M., and El-Diwany, A. I. (1983), Enzyme Microb. Technol. 5, 421–424.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Toyama, N. and Ogawa, K. (1975), in Symposium #5, Cellulose as a Chemical Energy Resource, Wilke, C. R., ed., Wiley, New York, pp. 225–244.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Lai, Y. Z. and Sarkanen, K. V. (1968), TAPPI 51(10), 449–453.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Sakai, K. and Kishimoto, S. (1966), J. Jpn. Wood Res. Soc. 12(6) 310–315.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Anonymous (1996), Chem. Weck, January 3/10, p. 22.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Anonymous (1995), Chem. Market. Report., December 25, p. 9.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Szmant, H. H. (1989), in Organic Building Blocks of the Chemical Industry, Wiley-Interscience, Wiley, NY, pp. 236–339.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Wilson, S. (1994), Chem. Ind. 7, p. 255.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Ehrman, T. (1992), Chemical Analysis and Testing Standard Procedure No. 002. National Research Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Ghose, T. K. (1987), Pure Appl. Chem. 59(2), 257–268.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Bailey, M. J., Biely, P., and Poutanen, K. (1992), J. Biotechnol. 23, 257–270.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Burden, D. W. and Whitney, D. B. (1995), in Biotechnology: Proteins to PCR. A Course in Strategy and Lab Techniques Birkhäuser, Boston, MA, pp. 43–47.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Philippidis, G. P., Smith, T. K., and Schmidt, S. L. (1993), Chemical Analysis and Testing Standard Procedure No. 008. National Research Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Philippidis, G. P. (1996), in Handbook on Bioethanol, C. E. Wyman, ed., Taylor and Francis, Washington, DC, pp. 253–285.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Zhang, M., Eddy, C., Deanda, K., Finkelstein, M., and Picataggio, S. (1995), Science 267, 240–243.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Brito, L. M. R. (1994), PhD thesis, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Schwald, W., Breuil, C., Brownell, H. H., Chan, M., and Saddler, J. N. (1989), Appl. Biochem. Biotechnol. 20/21, 29–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lincoln C. Teixeira
    • 1
    Email author
  • James C. Linden
    • 2
  • Herbert A. Schroeder
    • 2
  1. 1.Fundação Centro Tecnológico de Minas Gerais-CETECSetor de BiotecnologiaBelo HorizonteBrazil
  2. 2.Department of Chemical and Bioresource EngineeringColorado State UniversityFort Collins

Personalised recommendations