Bioconversion of industrial hemp to ethanol and methane: The benefits of steam pretreatment and co-production

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Several scenarios for ethanol production, methane production (by anaerobic digestion) and co-production of these, using autumn harvested hemp as substrate, were investigated and compared in terms of gross energy output. Steam pretreatment improved the methane production rate compared with mechanical grinding. The methane yield of steam pretreated stems was similar both with and without pre-hydrolysis with cellulolytic enzymes. Co-production of ethanol and methane from steam pretreated stems gave a high yield of transportation fuel, 11.1-11.7 MJ/kg processed stem dry matter (DM); more than twice that of ethanol production alone from hexoses, 4.4-5.1 MJ/kg processed stem DM. Co-production from the whole hemp plant would give 2600-3000 L ethanol and 2800-2900 m(3) methane, in total 171-180 GJ per 10,000 m(2) of agricultural land, based on a biomass yield of 16 Mg DM. Of this, the yeast and enzymes from ethanol production were estimated to contribute 700 m(3) (27 GJ) of methane. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Chemical Engineering
  • Industrial Biotechnology

Keywords

  • Biofuel, Biogas, Lignocellulose, Energy crops, Cannabis sativa L.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3457-3465
JournalBioresource Technology
Volume102
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes