(192h) Fermentablity of Organosolv Prehydrolysate From Loblolly Pine and Sweetgum

Li, M. - Presenter, Auburn University
Tu, M. - Presenter, Auburn University
Cao, D. - Presenter, Auburn University

Forestry lignocellulosic biomass is a great potential source of sustainable materials for cellulosic ethanol bioconversion process, which requires pretreatment, enzymatic hydrolysis and fermentation. In order to improve accessibility of lignocellulose to enzymes for hydrolysis, high temperature pretreatment with acid or base is typically needed to break down the recalcitrant structure of cellulose, and solubilize hemicellulose. However, during the pretreatments, considerable amount of inhibitors will be generated from degradation of cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin; many of these inhibitors will significantly reduce the microbial growth and ethanol productivity during the subsequent fermentation step. This inhibitory effect has become one of the major barriers to develop an economic viable process for cellulosic ethanol production. Identification of these fermentation inhibitors is widely recognized as one of the roadblocks for developing any effective detoxification approach and improving stress-tolerance yeast strain. The objective of this study is to examine the fermentability of pre-hydrolysate after organosolv pretreatment of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) and sweetgum (Liquidambar). New approach will be utilized to identify microbial fermentation inhibitors in the prehydrolysate of loblolly pine and sweetgum during the bioconversion of forestry biomass to ethanol. Various detoxification methods will be explored for improving the fermentation yield of lignocellulosic pre-hydrolysate.