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Comparative study of bioethanol production from sugarcane molasses by using <i>Zymomonas mobilis</i> and <i>Saccharomyces cerevisiae</i>

AH Khoja
E Ali
K Zafar
AA Ansari
A Nawar
M Qayyum


The study was designed to compare the bioethanol production from Zymomonas mobilis and Saccharomyces cerevisiae using molasses as production medium. The focus was on the retention time at lab scale. Bioethanol and petroleum blend can be used in existing gasoline engines. Present study showed a more cost-effective procedure for production of ethanol from sugar-cane molasses by using bacterial strain "Z. mobilis". Laboratory scale unit was designed to perform the experiments through batch fermentation and to determine the impact of leading parameters, including fermentation temperature, pH, sugar concentration, and nutrients. S. cerevisiae produced 8.3% (v/v) bioethanol provided sugar concentration 14 g /100 ml with the fermentation efficiency of 92.5%. On the contrary, Z.mobilis produced 9.3% (v/v) bioethanol by utilizing 16 g/100 ml sugar with the fermentation efficiency of 90.5%. Effect of nutrients on fermentation was determined using molasses as feedstock. Thin layer chromatography was also performed to assess the possible impurities in molasses as compared to the pure sugar. The pH and fermentation temperature was optimized for the enhanced yield of bioethanol.

Key words: Bioethanol, molasses, fermentation, Zymomonas mobilis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae.