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Improving economics of lignocellulosic biofuels: An integrated strategy for coproducing 1,5-pentanediol and ethanol
- Huang, Kefeng, Won, Wangyun, Barnett, Kevin J., Brentzel, Zachary J., Alonso, David M., Huber, George W., Dumesic, James A., Maravelias, Christos T.
- Applied energy 2018 v.213 pp. 585-594
- biofuels, biomass, biorefining, cellulose, enzymatic hydrolysis, ethanol, fermentation, fractionation, hemicellulose, lignocellulose, market prices, models, polyesters, polyurethanes, sugars
- A biorefinery strategy for the coproduction of ethanol and 1,5-pentanediol (1,5-PDO), which can be used as polyester and polyurethane component, from lignocellulosic biomass is proposed. This strategy integrates biomass fractionation with simultaneous conversion of hemicellulose and cellulose constituents into 1,5-PDO and ethanol, respectively. An experimentally-based process model is developed to determine the economic potential of the integrated strategy. The coproduction strategy becomes competitive with the ethanol-only strategy when 1,5-PDO can be sold at $1140/ton, which is well below the market price of 1,5-PDO. The most important process parameters include biomass loading for biomass fractionation, enzyme loading for enzymatic hydrolysis and fermentation, and overall achievable yields from C5 sugars to 1,5-PDO.