Chemical conversion of cellulose biomass to biofuels
Date of Original Version
Cellulose, a polysaccharide found in plant cell walls, is the most abundant organic compound on earth. Our research group has strived to hydrolyze the polysaccharide's β(1→4) linkages, so that glucose could be isolated for subsequent conversion to biofuels to replace the world's dwindling petroleum supply. This would create a renewable fuel source (ethanol), without compromising the food industry by depleting sugar cane and corn. We have discovered conditions that readily hydrolyze the β-linkage of cellobiose to quantitatively produce glucose. Current efforts are directed towards the hydrolysis of the β(1→4) linkages in cellulose, a considerably more difficult target because of limited solubility and robust secondary structure, resulting from its intricate lattice of hydrogen bonds.
ACS National Meeting Book of Abstracts
Pereira, Kyle C., Jessica Hegner, Brenton Deboef, and Brett L. Lucht. "Chemical conversion of cellulose biomass to biofuels." ACS National Meeting Book of Abstracts , (2009). https://digitalcommons.uri.edu/chm_facpubs/504