Comparison of different pretreatment methods for lignocellulosic materials. Part I: Conversion of rye straw to valuable products
The conversion of lignocellulose to valuable products requires I: a fractionation of the major components hemicellulose, cellulose, and lignin, II: an efficient method to process these components to higher valued products. The present work compares liquid hot water (LHW) pretreatment to the soda pulping process and to the ethanol organosolv pretreatment using rye straw as a single lignocellulosic material. The organosolv pretreated rye straw was shown to require the lowest enzyme loading in order to achieve a complete saccharification of cellulose to glucose. At biomass loadings of up to 15% (w/w) cellulose conversion of LHW and organosolv pretreated lignocellulose was found to be almost equal. The soda pulping process shows lower carbohydrate and lignin recoveries compared to the other two processes. In combination with a detailed analysis of the different lignins obtained from the three pretreatment methods, this work gives an overview of the potential products from different pretreatment processes. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.