Alkali combined extrusion pretreatment of corn stover to enhance enzyme saccharification

Shujing Zhang, Deepak R. Keshwani, Yixiang Xu, Milford A. Hanna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


Because of good adaptability, high throughput and continuous feature, twin-screw extrusion has been shown to be a promising pretreatment method for biomass to open the cell wall at the microscopic scale. This greatly increases the specific surface area for enzyme adsorption regardless of crystallinity. The objective of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of alkali-assisted extrusion for improving corn stover digestability. The glucose and xylose sugar yields for combined process were 86.8% and 50.5%, respectively, at an alkali loading of 0.04. g/g dry biomass, a screw speed of 80. rpm, temperature of 140 °C and washed with water. The average residence time for extrusion is 27. min for 100. g corn stover. These yields were 3.9 and 13.3 times higher than their untreated counterparters. The crystallinity index was not related with hydrolysis yields. Congo red dye adsorption indicated that alkali-assisted extrusion produced significantly more pores at the meso and large scales compared to untreated material, which significantly improved the sugar yields.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)352-357
Number of pages6
JournalIndustrial Crops and Products
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2012


  • Alkali
  • Corn stover
  • Extrusion
  • Pretreatment
  • Sugar
  • Washing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science


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