Ethanol production from sorghum by a microwave-assisted dilute ammonia pretreatment

Document Type


Publication Date



The efficiency of a batch microwave-assisted ammonia heating system was investigated as pretreatment for sweet sorghum bagasse and its effect on porosity, chemical composition, particle size, enzymatic hydrolysis and fermentation into ethanol evaluated. Sorghum bagasse, fractionated into three particle size groups (9.5-18, 4-6 and 1-2mm), was pretreated with ammonium hydroxide (28% v/v solution) and water at a ratio of 1:0.5:8 at 100, 115, 130, 145 and 160°C for 1h. Simon's stain method revealed an increase in the porosity of the biomass compared to untreated biomass. The most lignin removal (46%) was observed at 160°C. About 90% of the cellulose and 73% of the hemicellulose remained within the bagasse. The best glucose yields and ethanol yields (from glucose only) among all different pretreatment conditions averaged 42/100g dry biomass and 21/100g dry biomass, respectively with 1-2mm sorghum bagasse pretreated at 130°C for 1h.

Publication Source (Journal or Book title)

Bioresource technology

First Page


Last Page