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Frontiers of Chemical Science and Engineering >> 2011, Volume 5, Issue 2 doi: 10.1007/s11705-010-1010-y

Kinetic studies of xylan hydrolysis of corn stover in a dilute acid cycle spray flow-through reactor

1. College of Science, Nanjing University of Technology, Nanjing 210009, China; 2. State Key Laboratory of Materials-Oriented Chemical Engineering, College of Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Engineering, Nanjing University of Technology, Nanjing 210009, China

Available online:2011-06-05

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Xylan of corn stover was pretreated with 1%, 2% and 3% (w/w) sulfuric acid at relatively low temperatures (90°C, 95°C and 100°C) in a dilute acid cycle spray flow-through reactor (DCF). The hydrolysis of xylan to its monomeric xylose was modeled by a series of first-order reactions. Both biphasic and Saeman hydrolysis models were applied to fit the experimental data. The results confirmed that the kinetic data of xylan hydrolysis fitted a first-order irreversible reaction model and the experimental data. The reaction rates of xylose monomer formation and degradation were sensitive to catalyst concentration and temperature. Higher catalyst concentration and lower reaction temperature result in high xylose yield. The activation energy for xylose formation and degradation were determined to be 112.9 and 101.0 kJ·mol , respectively. Over 90% theoretical xylose obtained from corn stover can be used to produce ethanol, xylitol and fumaric acid by fermentation.

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