Improving enzymatic hydrolysis of brewer spent grain with nonthermal plasma

Rajeev Ravindran, Chaitanya Sarangapani, Swarna Jaiswal, Peng Lu, P. J. Cullen, Paula Bourke, Amit K. Jaiswal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, a new pre-treatment method based on novel non-thermal plasma technology was developed to improve the enzymatic hydrolysis of brewer's spent grain (BSG) and subsequent bioethanol production. A submerged dielectric barrier discharge plasma reactor system was applied for this purpose. Pre-treatments were performed by taking into account variables including; voltages (22 kV, 25 kV and 28 kV), solvent (acid, alkali and water) and time (5, 10, 15 min). The resulting treated biomass was subjected to enzymatic hydrolysis. A 2.14-fold increase in yield of the reducing sugar was achieved post hydrolysis when the biomass was treated in water for 10 min at a voltage setting of 28 kV (162.90 mg/g of BSG) compared to control (75.94 mg/g of BSG). This research suggests that subjecting lignocellulose to plasma discharges can enhance the efficiency of enzymatic hydrolysis. A high ethanol titre was also obtained upon fermentation of the hydrolysate (25.062 g/l).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)520-524
Number of pages5
JournalBioresource Technology
Early online date16 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2019


  • Atmospheric plasma, bioethanol production
  • Biomass pretreatment
  • Brewer's spent grain
  • Lignocellulose

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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