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Issue 22, 2016
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High biomass loadings of 40 wt% for efficient fractionation in biorefineries with an aqueous solvent system without adding adscititious catalyst

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Abstract

Development of lignocellulosic biorefineries requires improved environmental and cost-effective processes in addition to tailoring the lignocellulosic constitutions with the desired biofuels and chemicals. Here, we first report a novel strategy of lignocellulose fractionation at solid biomass loadings up to 40 wt% through irradiation assisted self-catalysis (IASC) with a green solvent aqueous system consisting of 40 wt% γ-valerolactone and 60 wt% water (40 : 60 GVL/H2O) with no adscititious catalyst. Each fraction of cellulose, hemicellulsoe and lignin can be prone to upgrade to desired biofuels and bioproducts. The irradiation-mediated carboxyl, aldehyde, and phenol groups in biomass act as weak active acid sites for (hemi) cellulose cleavage in 40 : 60 GVL/H2O and their subsequent self-catalyzed hydrolysis to soluble carbohydrates and their derived products, which are catalytically upgraded to furans with an 80% conversion rate, and/or fermentative upgrading to microbial oils (biomass 31 g L−1 and lipid content 36.5 wt%). The regenerated cellulose can achieve approximately 184.3 g L−1 monomeric glucose (total concentration of soluble C5 and C6 sugars is 231 g L−1) and high potential ethanol titers of 88.5 g L−1 during SSF fermentation. The obtained lignin also showed good reactivity for valorization to nanoparticle functional materials and/or low molecular aromatics. In the end, the overall process mass balance at the laboratory-scale level was preliminarily evaluated.

Graphical abstract: High biomass loadings of 40 wt% for efficient fractionation in biorefineries with an aqueous solvent system without adding adscititious catalyst

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Publication details

The article was received on 10 Aug 2016, accepted on 25 Aug 2016 and first published on 25 Aug 2016


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C6GC02225A
Citation: Green Chem., 2016,18, 6108-6114
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    High biomass loadings of 40 wt% for efficient fractionation in biorefineries with an aqueous solvent system without adding adscititious catalyst

    H. Zhou, R. Zhang, W. Zhan, L. Wang, L. Guo and Y. Liu, Green Chem., 2016, 18, 6108
    DOI: 10.1039/C6GC02225A

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