Characterization and fermentation of side streams from sulfite pulping
Journal article, 2014
The fermentability of four different side streams produced in sulfite pulping has been compared in ethanol production with Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The results show that the fermentability of the different side streams varies, depending on where in the process they are produced, and the additional treatment applied to them. Side streams spent sulfite liquor, spent sulfite liquor derivative and spent sulfite liquor after ethanol fermentation that were fermentable benefited from the main cooking process, during which 90% of the sulfite was removed, whereas the side stream produced in the first cooking step, containing 11.0 g/L sulfite, was unfermentable. The fermentation of the side streams resulted in lower yields and productivity than fermentation in a defined medium. Furthermore, the fermentability of the side streams was improved after over-liming, evaporation, and laccase treatment. Over-liming was the most efficient means of detoxifying the side-streams, resulting in better fermentability. Sulfite treatment, however, had a counterproductive effect on fermentation due to the toxicity of this chemical to yeast metabolism. When the side-streams were detoxified by over-liming, loss of sugars was observed. Laccase treatment was less efficient, but it should be further explored as it offers a sustainable method of detoxifying side streams in situ.