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Optimization of NMMO pre-treatment of straw for enhanced biogas production
University of Borås, School of Engineering.
University of Borås, School of Engineering.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year))Student thesis
Abstract [en]

Modern society depends on fossil fuels to fulfill the increasing energy demand, which could cause further damages in the environment. Therefore, it is mandatory to develop technologies for the production of efficient alternative renewable energy sources, like biofuels. Agricultural waste streams, such as wheat straw, produced in larger amount can be utilized for these purposes, and can be used as raw materials for both ethanol and biogas production. However, the compact structure of lignocelluloses present in these materials makes their biological degradation difficult. In order to enhance the biogas production, wheat straw milled to 2mm size was pretreated with N-methylmorpholine-N-oxide (NMMO) at 90°C for 7-30 hours in this study. 90°C was applied as treatment temperature for the treatment to be able to investigate if the district heating system could be utilized in the treatment process in the future. The effects of the different pretreatment conditions were then evaluated by running batch anaerobic digestion assays for 45 days at 55°C. The best result was achieved after 7h treatment, leading to 0.47 Nm3/kg VS of straw methane production, corresponding to an increase by 47% compared to methane production obtained for the untreated straw. Furthermore, it was possible to recover up to 91.33% of the straw after the NMMO pretreatment. There were no significant changes in the chemical composition of the straw caused by the treatment, however structural analyses, like FTIR for the determination of crystallinity and and Simon Staining for the determination of porosity of the material showed that the crytallinity decreased, while the porosity increased as results of the treatment. Soaking in water for 72h prior to NMMO treatment was also applied to see whether it can improve the diffusion of NMMO into the material, but without success, due to the dilution of the treatment chemical caused by the soaking. The findings made during the experimental stage indicated that it is possible to run the NMMO pretreatment at an industrial temperature, further evaluation for the economical feasibility of this treatment method is however needed in the future.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
University of Borås/School of Engineering , 2012.
Series
Magisteruppsats
Keywords [en]
NMMO, Lignocellulose, Biogas, Straw
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-16930Local ID: 2320/11692OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-16930DiVA, id: diva2:1308820
Note
Program: MSc in Resource Recovery - Industrial BiotechnologyAvailable from: 2019-04-30 Created: 2019-04-30

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