Treated effluent water use in cellulosic ethanol production

Divya Ramchandran, Kishore Rajagopalan, Timothy J. Strathmann, Vijay Singh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The bioethanol industry exerts a significant demand on water supplies. Current water consumption rate in corn dry grind ethanol plants is 3 to 4 gallons of water per gallon of ethanol produced (gal/gal) and 6 to 10 gal/gal for cellulosic ethanol plants. The main goal of this study is to examine the use of treated wastewater effluent in place of potable freshwater for cellulosic ethanol production. The effects of using two different types of filtered treated effluent; Bloomington- Normal, IL (Residential type) and Decatur, IL (Industrial/Residential Mix type); on the rate of fermentation and final ethanol yield from a pure cellulosic substrate were evaluated. Final ethanol concentration with Bloomington- Normal and Decatur effluent and our control study using de-ionized water were similar, resulting in 4.57 ± 0.22 % v/v (0.36 g/g, db), 4.74 ± 0.13 % v/v (0.37 g/g, db) and 4.55 ± 0.28 % v/v (0.36 g/g, db), respectively. Residual glucose concentrations were <0.04% w/v at 48 hr in all cases, suggesting complete fermentation. Further study with Decatur effluent using 0.08 mm finely ground Miscanthus as the substrate resulted in a final ethanol concentration of 0.46 ± 0.008 % v/v (0.14 g/g db) which was similar to ethanol concentration of 0.52 ± 0.07 % v/v (0.17 g/g db) obtained with control treatment using de-ionized water. These findings suggest that with proper characterization studies and under appropriate conditions, the use of treated effluent water in cellulosic ethanol production is feasible.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAIChE 2012 - 2012 AIChE Annual Meeting, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2012
Event2012 AIChE Annual Meeting, AIChE 2012 - Pittsburgh, PA, United States
Duration: Oct 28 2012Nov 2 2012

Other

Other2012 AIChE Annual Meeting, AIChE 2012
CountryUnited States
CityPittsburgh, PA
Period10/28/1211/2/12

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)

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