Sugar production from cellulose
In the present technological scenery, HTE caught the importance of developing a chemical industry capable of increasing the value of the biomasses (agribusiness’ sub-products or waste). At this time, for the production of biofuels, pharmaceutical products, cosmetics, polymers, pigments, the chemical industries use basic products from the agribusiness industry (sugar, starches, fibers, etc.) which are competitive in Food and Feed market. Industries have found a urgent need of developing new technologies for producing polymers, biofuels, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics that not compete with food industry and that could increase, both environmentally and economically, the value of the non-edible waste of the agribusiness industry. In these meaning, market is proceeding towards second generation technologies for the production of sugars from ligno-cellulosic materials which came from waste or non-food crops; the real challenge consist in developing both efficient and economically sustainable treatment techniques.
The production of bioethanol nowadays is the most sustainable, but has some limits. Long reaction time, discontinuous production, carbohydrates loss, composition of inhibitors for the enzymatic growth and compactness of the lignocellulosic structure make really difficult the process of solubilization and hydrolysis of the cellulose for the production of fermentable sugars.
EPACH (Electrolytic Proton Assisted Celluloid Hydrolysis) is an innovative technology, both efficient and sustainable, which allows the hydrolysis of the cellulose assisted by electrolytic protons, capable of synthesizing the sugars from non-edible or waste ligno-cellulosic organic components, for the production of a second generation ethanol that could be used as biofuels.