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Title: Increasing the economic value of lignocellulosic stillage through medium-chain fatty acid production

BackgroundLignocellulosic biomass is viewed as an abundant renewable source of liquid fuels and chemicals that are currently derived from petroleum. When lignocellulosic biomass is used for ethanol production, the resulting liquid residue (stillage) contains large amounts of organic material that could be further transformed into recoverable bioproducts, hence enhancing the economics of the biorefinery. ResultsHere we test the hypothesis that a bacterial community could transform the organics in stillage into valuable bioproducts. We demonstrate the ability of this microbiome to convert stillage organics into medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), identify the predominant community members, and perform a technoeconomic analysis of recovering MCFAs as co-products of ethanol production. Steady-state operation of a stillage-fed bioreactor showed that 18% of the organic matter in stillage was converted to MCFAs. Xylose and complex carbohydrates were the primary substrates transformed. During the MCFA production period, the five major genera represented more than 95% of the community, including Lactobacillus, Roseburia, Atopobium, Olsenella, and Pseudoramibacter. To assess the potential benefits of producing MCFAs from stillage, we modeled the economics of ethanol and MCFA co-production, at MCFA productivities observed during reactor operation. ConclusionsThe analysis predicts that production of MCFAs, ethanol, and electricity could reduce the minimum ethanol selling pricemore » from 2.15 dollars 1.76 dollars gal -1 ($2.68 gal -1 gasoline equivalents) when compared to a lignocellulosic biorefinery that produces only ethanol and electricity.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
FC02-07ER64494; SC0018409
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Biotechnology for Biofuels
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 11; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1754-6834
Publisher:
BioMed Central
Research Org:
Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; 37 INORGANIC, ORGANIC, PHYSICAL, AND ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY; Medium-chain fatty acids; Mixed culture fermentation; Carboxylate platform; Chain elongation; Lignocellulose; Stillage
OSTI Identifier:
1504752
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1506424

Scarborough, Matthew J., Lynch, Griffin, Dickson, Mitch, McGee, Mick, Donohue, Timothy J., and Noguera, Daniel R.. Increasing the economic value of lignocellulosic stillage through medium-chain fatty acid production. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.1186/s13068-018-1193-x.
Scarborough, Matthew J., Lynch, Griffin, Dickson, Mitch, McGee, Mick, Donohue, Timothy J., & Noguera, Daniel R.. Increasing the economic value of lignocellulosic stillage through medium-chain fatty acid production. United States. doi:10.1186/s13068-018-1193-x.
Scarborough, Matthew J., Lynch, Griffin, Dickson, Mitch, McGee, Mick, Donohue, Timothy J., and Noguera, Daniel R.. 2018. "Increasing the economic value of lignocellulosic stillage through medium-chain fatty acid production". United States. doi:10.1186/s13068-018-1193-x. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1504752.
@article{osti_1504752,
title = {Increasing the economic value of lignocellulosic stillage through medium-chain fatty acid production},
author = {Scarborough, Matthew J. and Lynch, Griffin and Dickson, Mitch and McGee, Mick and Donohue, Timothy J. and Noguera, Daniel R.},
abstractNote = {BackgroundLignocellulosic biomass is viewed as an abundant renewable source of liquid fuels and chemicals that are currently derived from petroleum. When lignocellulosic biomass is used for ethanol production, the resulting liquid residue (stillage) contains large amounts of organic material that could be further transformed into recoverable bioproducts, hence enhancing the economics of the biorefinery.ResultsHere we test the hypothesis that a bacterial community could transform the organics in stillage into valuable bioproducts. We demonstrate the ability of this microbiome to convert stillage organics into medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), identify the predominant community members, and perform a technoeconomic analysis of recovering MCFAs as co-products of ethanol production. Steady-state operation of a stillage-fed bioreactor showed that 18% of the organic matter in stillage was converted to MCFAs. Xylose and complex carbohydrates were the primary substrates transformed. During the MCFA production period, the five major genera represented more than 95% of the community, including Lactobacillus, Roseburia, Atopobium, Olsenella, and Pseudoramibacter. To assess the potential benefits of producing MCFAs from stillage, we modeled the economics of ethanol and MCFA co-production, at MCFA productivities observed during reactor operation. ConclusionsThe analysis predicts that production of MCFAs, ethanol, and electricity could reduce the minimum ethanol selling price from 2.15 dollars 1.76 dollars gal-1 ($2.68 gal-1 gasoline equivalents) when compared to a lignocellulosic biorefinery that produces only ethanol and electricity.},
doi = {10.1186/s13068-018-1193-x},
journal = {Biotechnology for Biofuels},
number = 1,
volume = 11,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {7}
}

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