Main content area

Wet fractionation of the succulent halophyte Salicornia sinus-persica, with the aim of low input (water saving) biorefining into bioethanol

Alassali, Ayah, Cybulska, Iwona, Galvan, Alejandro Ríos, Thomsen, Mette Hedegaard
Applied microbiology and biotechnology 2017 v.101 no.4 pp. 1769-1779
Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Salicornia, bioethanol, biomass, biorefining, cellulose, ethanol, ethanol production, feedstocks, fermentation, fractionation, halophytes, juices, pulp, sugar content, water conservation, yeasts
In this study Salicornia sinus-persica, a succulent halophyte was assessed for its potential to be used as a feedstock for bioethanol production. For such succulent, salty, green biomasses, direct fractionation and fermentation allow for water preservation in the process. Fresh biomass of S. sinus-persica was collected and split into two fractions by wet fractionation; liquid (juice) and solid (pulp). Sugar contents were found to be 1.0–1.5% for the juice fraction and 50% (w/w) for the fresh pulp. Direct fermentation of the juice using Saccharomyces cerevisiae showed no salt inhibition of the yeast and ethanol yields of ~70% were achieved. A pretreatment study was carried out for the pulp fraction applying mild hydrothermal pretreatment. Cellulose convertibility was found to be significantly higher for severity factors above 2.00, and the highest ethanol yield (76.91 ± 3.03%) was found at process severity of 3.06 (170 °C, 10 min).