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Lignocellulosic Bioethanol Production of Napier Grass Using Trichoderma reesei and Saccharomyces cerevisiae Co-Culture Fermentation

1Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Rajamangala University of Technology Thanyaburi, Pathumthani 12110, Thailand

2Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Rajamangala University of Technology Thanyaburi, Pathumthani 12110, Thailand

3Institute of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand

4 Research Unit in Bioconversion/Bioseparation for Value-Added Chemical Production, Institute of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand

5 Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand

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Received: 20 Nov 2021; Revised: 9 Jan 2022; Accepted: 16 Jan 2022; Available online: 25 Jan 2022; Published: 5 May 2022.
Editor(s): Rock Keey Liew
Open Access Copyright (c) 2022 The Authors. Published by Centre of Biomass and Renewable Energy (CBIORE)
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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Bioethanol from agricultural waste is an attractive way to turn waste into added value that will solve the problem of food competition and waste management. Napier grass is a highly productive and effective lignocellulosic biomass, which is an important substrate of the second-generation biofuels. In addition, several processes are required in the production of ethanol from lignocellulosic materials; thus, co-culture fermentation can shorten the production process. This experimental research utilizes Trichoderma reesei and Saccharomyces cerevisiae co-culture fermentation in the bioethanol production of Napier grass using simultaneous saccharification and fermentation technology. To improve ethanol yield, Napier grass was pretreated with 3% (w/w) sodium hydroxide. An orthogonal experimental design was employed to optimize the Napier grass content, mixed crude co-culture loading, and incubation time for maximum bioethanol production. The results showed that pretreatment increased cellulose contents from 52.85% to 82%. The optimal fermentation condition was 15 g Napier grass, 15 g mixed crude co-culture, and 7 days incubation time, which maximizes the bioethanol yield of 16.90 g/L. Furthermore, the fermentation was upscaled 20-fold, and experiments were performed with and without supplemented sugar using laboratory-scale optimal fermentation conditions. The novelty of this research lies in the use of a mixed crude co-culture of T. reesei and S. cerevisiae to produce bioethanol from Napier grass with the maximum bioethanol concentration of 25.02 and 33.24 g/L under unadded and added sugar conditions and to reduce operational step and capital costs.

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Keywords: Bioethanol; Napier grass; Trichoderma reesei; Saccharomyces cerevisiae

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