Cellulosic ethanol production was carried out using Empty Fruit Bunches (EFB) via Separate Hydrolysis and Fermentation (SHF) approach. In this study, the EFB was initially pretreated with alkaline treatment using 1% (w/v) sodium hydroxide (NaOH) followed by mild acid hydrolysis using 0.7% (v/v) sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and enzymatic saccharification prior to fermentation with Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Pretreatment of EFB via alkaline and acid hydrolysis produced 13.38±0.18 g L-1 of xylose and 0.54±0.18 g L-1 of glucose. A total of 16.4±3.86 g L-1 and 3.85±2.2 g L-1 of glucose and xylose respectively was produced during the enzymatic saccharification. The EFB hydrolysate obtained was subjected to fermentation in batch mode and the influence of pH, temperature and rate of agitation on bioethanol production were evaluated. From optimization works of these various fermentation parameters, it was found that the highest ethanol yield (Yp/s) was 0.51 g ethanol/g glucose achieved from 50 g L-1 of acid enzymatically saccharified EFB hydrolysate at pH 4, 30°C and 100 rpm was recorded at 72 h of incubation. This study showed that EFB generated from palm biomass can be used as a lignocellulosic ethanol production feedstock for the future.
Mohd Asyraf Kassim, Loh Soh Kheang, Nasrin Abu Bakar, Astimar Abdul Aziz and Rosnah Mat Som, 2011. Biothanol Production from Enzymatically Saccharified Empty Fruit Bunches Hydrolysate using Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Research Journal of Environmental Sciences, 5: 573-586.