International Journal of Applied Science and Technology

ISSN 2221-0997 (Print), 2221-1004 (Online)

Comparison of Biomass Content for the Evaluation of Cellulosic Ethanol Fuel Production from Predominant Perennial Grasses in South-South, Nigeria
Idongesit Ekpo, Regina Ogali, Samuel Ofodile, Ozioma Achugasim

Spectrophotometric and gravimetric methods of analyses were used to quantitatively compare the biomass compositions of three predominant perennial grass species; Eleusine indica(Ei), Pernnisetum purpureum (Pp), and Panicum maximum (Pm) that are found in the study area. The range of values for the percentage composition of the biomass components; cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin were 26.10±0.85 ̶ 34.04±0.24, 32.51±1.85 ̶ 42.57±1.17 and 3.09±0.09 ̶ 5.62±0.17 respectively. The sample with the highest amount of cellulose showed a promising raw material for the establishment of an ethanol fuel biorefinery in the region while that with the highest amount of hemicellulose which was different from the former showed that optimum production of the desired product could be obtained if advanced technologies are put in place to successfully ferment the pentoses fraction of the hemicellulose that may be present in the pretreatment hydrolysate. Eleusine indica with the highest amount of ash and metal (Mn) contents; 89,500±40.37ppm and 240.01±3.04ppm respectively was found to be likely that which will produce the list amount of the desired product as these substances may cause inhibitory effects to enzymatic activities in the reaction pathway and this specie was observed to have the lowest amount of the necessary biomass feedstock: cellulose and hemicelluloses, it also had the second highest amount of total extractable polyphenolics (TEPs); which is a potential inhibitor to enzymatic activities.

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