The effect of ecotype and planting location on properties and biofuels yield of big bluestem

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dc.contributor.author Zhang, Ke en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2014-04-25T22:59:41Z
dc.date.available 2014-04-25T22:59:41Z
dc.date.issued 2014-04-25
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2097/17594
dc.description.abstract Renewable fuels derived from lignocellulosic biomass could reduce our dependence on fossil fuel resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Big bluestem is an ecological-dominant warm-season (C4) perennial native grass that comprises as much as 80% of the plant biomass in prairies in the Midwestern grasslands of North America. Its high cellulosic content and low agricultural input recently have made big bluestem a promising feedstock for ethanol production. The overall goals of this study are to evaluate the potential of big bluestem in terms of ethanol production comparing with other native grasses by diluted sulfuric acid pretreatment and simultaneous saccharification and fermentation and to understand the effects of ecotype and planting location on the chemical and elemental compositions and thermal properties as well as fermentable sugar yield of big bluestem along the Great Plains precipitation gradient. A total conversion efficiency of 79.2% and an ethanol concentration of 9.4 g/L were achieved after 72 h fermentation. About 0.262 kg (~0.332 Liters) ethanol could be produced from one kilogram dry mass of big bluestem under the present condition. Planting location had significant effects on chemical and elemental as well as specific heat, thermogravimetric parameters, high heating value and glucan mass yield. Ecotype had significant effects on glucan, xylan, lignin, and ash contents, and C, O, and H elemental fractions as well as specific heat, high heating value and glucan mass yield, whereas planting location significantly affected all measured variables. The ecotype-location interaction had significant effects on glucan, lignin, hydrogen contents and specific heat. Up to 97%, 88% and 80% of the variation in compositions can be explained by annual precipitation, growing degree days and potential evapotranspiration in 2010 respectively. Among all environmental factors, potential evapotranspiration had the most significant effect on thermal properties. Planting location had a stronger influence than ecotype and interaction between location and ecotype. Precipitation in 2010 possibly played a more significant role in divergence of glucan mass yield of the big bluestem. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher Kansas State University en
dc.subject Big bluestem en_US
dc.subject Ecotype en_US
dc.subject Chemical composition en_US
dc.subject Elemental composition en_US
dc.subject Thermal properties en_US
dc.subject Ethanol en_US
dc.title The effect of ecotype and planting location on properties and biofuels yield of big bluestem en_US
dc.type Dissertation en_US
dc.description.degree Doctor of Philosophy en_US
dc.description.level Doctoral en_US
dc.description.department Department of Biological & Agricultural Engineering en_US
dc.description.advisor Zhijian Pei en_US
dc.description.advisor Donghai Wang en_US
dc.subject.umi Biochemistry (0487) en_US
dc.date.published 2014 en_US
dc.date.graduationmonth May en_US


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