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Design of a sustainable development process between phytoremediation and production of bioethanol with Eichhornia crassipes

Sayago, Uriel Fernando Carreño
Environmental monitoring and assessment 2019 v.191 no.4 pp. 221
Eichhornia crassipes, aquatic ecosystems, bioethanol, biomass, bioreactors, chromium, ethanol production, heavy metals, phytoremediation, surface water, sustainable development
Eichhornia crassipes is considered a problem in different aquatic ecosystems, due to its abundance it could become a solution to design and build economic and efficient treatment plants, and especially for the production of biofuels such as bioethanol. The objective of this research is to design and implement a process of sustainable development between phytoremediation and the production of bioethanol with E. crassipes, evaluating the incidence of chromium adhered to the biomass of this plant in the production of bioethanol. A system was installed to evaluate the phytoremediation with E. crassipes with water loaded with chromium, determining the effectiveness of this plant to eliminate this heavy metal even if it is alive in a body of water. After this process, we proceeded to take the biomass loaded with chromium to the bioreactors to evaluate the production of bioethanol, evaluating three types of biomass, one without chromium adhered and the other two with chromium adhered to the structure of its plant. There was a 25% decrease in the ethanol production of E. crassipes due to the presence of chromium. Concluding that the biomass of E. crassipes could be used totally for phytoremediation processes of waters contaminated with heavy metals and later use this biomass for the production of bioethanol, finding a sustainable system to be used on a larger scale.