3 Biotech

, 8:221 | Cite as

Fractionation of lignocellulosic biopolymers from sugarcane bagasse using formic acid-catalyzed organosolv process

  • Nopparat Suriyachai
  • Verawat Champreda
  • Natthakorn Kraikul
  • Wikanda Techanan
  • Navadol Laosiripojana
Original Article


A one-step formic acid-catalyzed organosolv process using a low-boiling point acid–solvent system was studied for fractionation of sugarcane bagasse. Compared to H2SO4, the use of formic acid as a promoter resulted in higher efficiency and selectivity on removals of hemicellulose and lignin with increased enzymatic digestibility of the cellulose-enriched solid fraction. The optimal condition from central composite design analysis was determined as 40 min residence time at 159 °C using water/ethanol/ethyl acetate/formic acid in the respective ratios of 43:20:16:21%v/v. Under this condition, a 94.6% recovery of cellulose was obtained in the solid with 80.2% cellulose content while 91.4 and 80.4% of hemicellulose and lignin were removed to the aqueous–alcohol–acid and ethyl acetate phases, respectively. Enzymatic hydrolysis of the solid yielded 84.5% glucose recovery compared to available glucan in the raw material. Physicochemical analysis revealed intact cellulose fibers with decreased crystallinity while the hemicellulose was partially recovered as mono- and oligomeric sugars. High-purity organosolv lignin with < 1% sugar cross-contamination was obtained with no major structural modification according to Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. The work represents an alternative process for efficient fractionation of lignocellulosic biomass in biorefineries.


Biorefinery Fractionation Organosolv Sugarcane bagasse Solvent recovery 



This project was financially supported by PTT Global Chemicals and the Thailand Research Fund (RTA5980006). Manuscript proofreading by Dr. Pornkamol Unrean and Dr. Philip J. Shaw is appreciated.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

13205_2018_1244_MOESM1_ESM.docx (208 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 208 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nopparat Suriyachai
    • 1
  • Verawat Champreda
    • 2
    • 3
  • Natthakorn Kraikul
    • 4
  • Wikanda Techanan
    • 4
  • Navadol Laosiripojana
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.The Joint Graduate School for Energy and Environment (JGSEE)King Mongkut’s University of Technology ThonburiBangkokThailand
  2. 2.Enzyme Technology LaboratoryNational Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (BIOTEC)PatumthaniThailand
  3. 3.BIOTEC-JGSEE Integrative Biorefinery LaboratoryPatumthaniThailand
  4. 4.PTT Global Chemicals PCLBangkokThailand

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