(421o) Alternative Source of Cellulosic Biofuel In Malaysia: An Initial Assessment of Rice Straw
The lignocellulosic biomass (LCB) from crop residues and wasted crops contains appreciable amount of cellulose and hemicellulose that could be converted into fermentable sugars, a renewable source for biofuel processes. The LCB is expected to produce approximately 491 billion liters of bioethanol annually, about 16 times higher than the current world bioethanol production. Rice, scientifically known as Oryza Sativa is a staple food in Malaysia as in most countries in the region and is widely planted in most of the states in the country. It is reported that 60% of the rice crop production is rice straw, followed by rice, 26%, and husk and bran, 14%. The estimated rice straw production in the country could reach to 3.6 million tonnes annually and is potential to generate about 997 million liters of bioethanol annually which can substitute approximately 10% of gasoline used in transport sector. AFEX conditions were optimized for different particle size (ranging from 2 mm to 5 cm) by monitoring the sugar conversion during enzyme at 1% and 3% glucan loading. Interestingly, the largest size of rice straw (5 cm) gave the higher glucan and xylan conversion for a given AFEX condition when compared to smallest size (2mm). Hydrolysate produced from these substrates were found to be highly fermentable using S. cerevisiae 424A(LNH-ST) without any external nutrient supplementations. Details about these research findings will be presented.