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Barley straw shows potential as transport biofuel raw material The hemicellulose sugars of barley straw can be effectively fermented into biobutanol when starch is added during the pretreatment or fermentation process, according to a study from the University of Eastern Finland. Seeking to find alternatives to ethanol as a fuel, the study established optimal pretreatment conditions for turning straw lignocellulose and barley starch into fermentable sugars that can be used in the production of biobutanol. The hemicellulose sugars of barley straw (eg, xylose) released during pretreatment can be effectively fermented into biobutanol when starch is added to the fermentation broth. The study found that the cooperation of xylanase and surfactants with cellulase during the hydrolysis of straw significantly increased the efficiency of cellulose utilisation in butanol fermentation. Moreover, the pretreatment liquor of fresh barley silage was efficiently used for butanol fermentation, indicating the feasibility of green field biomass preservation via a silage technique in biorefining processes.

Šfreeimages.com/Chris Chidsey

At present, sugar- or starch-based biomass (sugarcane molasses, corn and wheat) are the main feedstocks for butanol

In recent years, climate change has attracted widespread

production. The climatic and social sustainability of large-scale

interest in biorefining and, in particular, the transport of biofuels

fuel production from these raw materials is under wide-ranging

production. Butanol as a competitive renewable biofuel is

debate. The possible solution for obtaining enough fermentable

superior to ethanol in many aspects, with higher energy density,

substrates is the efficient utilisation of the plentiful lignocellulosic

lower volatility and hygroscopicity and less corrosion to existing

biomass available on Earth. Barley has been regarded as a good

infrastructure. Importantly, it can be directly used in automobile

supplement to corn biofuel production, as well as a replacement

Projekt2 12:02 Seite 1 engines07.01.16 without modification.

www.SustainabilityMatters.net.au

for the production of biofuels.

Feb/Mar 2016 - Sustainability Matters 15

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Sustainability Matters Feb/Mar 2016  

Sustainability Matters is a bi-monthly magazine showcasing the latest products, technology and sustainable solutions for industry, governmen...

Sustainability Matters Feb/Mar 2016  

Sustainability Matters is a bi-monthly magazine showcasing the latest products, technology and sustainable solutions for industry, governmen...