Waste management & research : the journal of the International Solid Wastes and Public Cleansing Association, ISWA

A citrus waste-based biorefinery as a source of renewable energy: technical advances and analysis of engineering challenges.

PMID 23439875


An assessment of recent technical advances on pretreatment processes and its effects on enzymatic hydrolysis as the main steps of a proposed citrus processing waste (CPW) biorefinery is presented. Engineering challenges and relevant gaps in scientific and technical information for reliable design, modeling and scale up of a CPW biorefinery are also discussed. Some integrated physico-chemical pretreatments are proposed for testing for CPW, including high speed knife-grinding and simultaneous caustic addition. These new proposed processes and the effect of parameters such as particle size, surface area and morphology, pore volume and chemical composition of the diverse fractions resulting from pretreatment and enzymatic hydrolysis need to be evaluated and compared for pretreated and untreated samples of grapefruit processing waste. This assessment suggests the potential for filling the data gaps, and preliminary results demonstrate that the reduction of particle size and the increased surface area for the CPW will result in higher reaction rates and monosaccharide yields for the pretreated waste material.