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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Biorefining Processes

Location: Bioproduct Chemistry and Engineering Research

Title: Poisoning of mixed matrix membranes by fermentation components in pervaporation of ethanol

Authors
item OFFEMAN, RICHARD
item Ludvik, Charles -

Submitted to: Journal Membrane Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: November 3, 2010
Publication Date: January 15, 2011
Citation: Offeman, R.D., Ludvik, C.N. 2011. Poisoning of mixed matrix membranes by fermentation components in pervaporation of ethanol. Journal Membrane Science. 367:288-295.

Interpretive Summary: Pervaporation is an alternative to distillation for recovering ethanol produced by fermentation of grains and biomass. Ethanol-selective mixed matrix membranes of the hydrophobic zeolite ZSM-5 in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) have superior performance compared to pure PDMS membranes in pervaporation of clean ethanol/water solutions, but are susceptible to performance reduction when pervaporating fermentation broths. The effects of pervaporating a variety of solutions with 60 wt% ZSM-5/PDMS membranes were studied. Corn dry-grind fermentation broth, thin stillage, and a synthetic syngas fermentation broth rapidly and significantly degraded mixed matrix membrane performance. Broths treated to remove corn oil and fatty acids were much more benign. Oleic acid, as a representative fatty acid, was identified as a significant performance reducer.

Technical Abstract: Pervaporation is an alternative to distillation for recovering ethanol produced by fermentation of grains and biomass. Ethanol-selective mixed matrix membranes of the hydrophobic zeolite ZSM-5 in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) have superior performance compared to pure PDMS membranes in pervaporation of clean ethanol/water solutions, but are susceptible to performance reduction when pervaporating fermentation broths. The effects of pervaporating a variety of solutions with 60 wt% ZSM-5/PDMS membranes were studied. Corn dry-grind fermentation broth, thin stillage, and a synthetic syngas fermentation broth rapidly and significantly degraded mixed matrix membrane performance. Broths treated to remove corn oil and fatty acids were much more benign. Oleic acid, as a representative fatty acid, was identified as a significant performance reducer.

Last Modified: 8/27/2014
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