Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: October 31, 2008
Publication Date: January 1, 2010
Citation: Dien, B.S. 2010. Mass Balances and Analytical Methods for Biomass Pretreatment Experiments. In: Vertes, A. A., Qureshi, N., Blaschek, H. P., Yukawa, H., editors. Biomass to Biofuels. Strategies for Global Industries. United Kingdom: Wiley and Sons. p. 213-231.
Conversion of lignocellulosic biomass into fuel ethanol has generated much renewed interest because of spiraling oil prices. Standard technical techniques exist for evaluating new sources of biomass, but what is lacking is a framework with which to apply these protocols in an integrated fashion. This manuscript seeks to address this need. Techniques for determining plant biomass chemical composition and establishing the effectiveness of pretreatment schemes are discussed in detail and, more significantly, the expected data are framed in terms of balances describing the whole process from biomass through fermentable sugars to ethanol. The general discussion is further reinforced by introducing selected examples of biomass work from the literature. It is hoped that the work will be of value to those seeking to undertake work in this field or for those with a technical interest in the literature.