American Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Utilization of Soft Wood Wastes as a Feed Stock to Produce Fuel Ethanol

Adnan M. Khalil, Ali F. Al-Shawabkeh, Ayman S. Mazahreh, Mohmmad S. Al-Damanhoory and Jihad M. Quasem

DOI : 10.3844/ajeassp.2009.451.455

American Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Volume 2, Issue 2

Pages 451-455


Problem statement: The current research investigated the utilization of soft wood waste as a feedstock to produce a value-added product-fuel ethanol. Approach: The main issue in converting soft wood waste to fuel ethanol is the accessibility of the polysaccharides for breaking down into monosaccharides. This study focused on the use of steam as the pretreatment method. The governing factors for the effectiveness of steam pretreatment are steam temperature and retention times. Following steam pretreatment, soft wood waste was subjected to acid hydrolysis. The sugars released by acid hydrolysis were fermented in series chemical reactions that convert sugars to ethanol. The fermentation reaction was caused by yeast, which feed on the sugars. Results: Steam pretreatment was able to improve both glucose yields from acid hydrolysis and ethanol yields from fermentation. The results obtained from this study showed that steam pretreated soft wood waste are a heterogeneous material. So biomass goes through a size-reduction step to make it easier to handle and to make the ethanol production process more efficient. Steam treatment on soft wood waste increased the hydrolysis of cellulose by acid hydrolysis. Following 24 h of diluted or concentrated acid hydrolysis, a maximum cellulose conversion of 20.5% was obtained. Similarly, sugars to ethanol conversions were improved by steam treatment. Maximum sugar to ethanol conversion of 40.7% was observed. Conclusion: It was recommended that the hydrolysis process be done for 40 min to obtain the maximum sugars yield in a reasonable period of time.


© 2009 Adnan M. Khalil, Ali F. Al-Shawabkeh, Ayman S. Mazahreh, Mohmmad S. Al-Damanhoory and Jihad M. Quasem. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.