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Thread: Ethanol from wood chips

  1. #1
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    Ethanol from wood chips

    Cellulose Complex Enzymes for Cellulosic Ethanol , January 21 , 2021 , The biological and eco-friendly method to produce ethanol from cellulose is cellulolytic processes which consist of hydrolysis on pretreated lignocellulosic materials using a group of enzymes to break complex cellulose into simple sugar , followed by fermentation and distillation . Cellulosic Ethanol , or second generation Ethanol , is a biofuel produced from cellulose (the stringy fibre of a plant) rather than from the plant's seed , fruit or tuber . ... Cellulosic Ethanol :Environmentally Friendly , But Costly I copied this from the internet .

  2. #2
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    I have been making homebrew whiskey for around 10 years now and use pure white sugar to produce 95% ethyl alcohol or ethanol. After i heard about 3 people dying from homebrew alcohol in Queensland years ago i did some research and found out that they were brewing using grape skins, seeds including the wooden stems trying to make Grappa. Fermenting wood produces methanol which in certain quantities will kill you. As far as i could find out methanol comes from fermenting wood.

    Just thought i would add this to the discussion but you can run a car off the stuff i make but i prefer whiskey

  3. #3
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    Yendor, I also use Sugar to create alcohol. One thing to note is that fermenting alcohol using white sugar as the fermentable sugars may also produce small amounts of Methanol. I always take the heads off for cleaning alcohol and use the main distillate for my drinks.
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    '80 Mercedes 300D. 2 tank conversion [Sold]
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  4. #4
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    I meant ethanol for use as a renewable biofuel . I made biodiesel from 99.5% anhydrous (dry) ethanol . A chemistry professor here said most industrial ethanol was made from natural gas which is not a renewable biofuel . There's a saying the money is in the junk end of the business . That is making something of value from something that has little or even negative value . It's possible that industrial ethanol might be made from grass , saw dust , wood scraps via making the cellulose in it into sugar , then alcohol by fermentation . It's not scotch whiskey but it might serve as a cost effective biofuel .

  5. #5
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    Tony, I was led to believe that the first 50 to 80ml that you discard from the distilling process contained a high percentage of Fusel oils that can give you a classic frontal lobe headache. This is if using a reflux still. The pot still ends up carrying over most of these oils in commercial spirits which gives you that stinking headache. The Books that I have read may be wrong of course.

    Anyway this site is about Biofuel not homebrew. I figure that it costs me about $16 to make 4 litres of 96% ethanol without adding the cost of water and electricity to distil it.

    Not very cost effective for fuel. SVO is free so far. Woo Hoo !

    Yendor

  6. #6
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    Yendor, Methanol is the bit that causes health issues (including blindness) when pot stills are used. I remove the "heads" which contain the lower boiling point Methanol.
    I would not waste Ethanol for use as a fuel. It is too valuable as a component of a refreshing beverage.
    95% Ethanol has too much water in it to be used as a viable fuel. It will not blend with petrol unless it is dried to >99% Ethanol. It also causes issues with fuel systems in some vehicles.
    Life is a journey, with problems to solve, lessons to learn, but most of all, experiences to enjoy.

    Current Vehicles in stable:
    '06 Musso Sports 4X4 Manual Crew Cab tray back.
    '04 Rexton 4X4 Automatic SUV
    '2014 Toyota Prius (on ULP) - Wife's car

    Previous Vehicles:
    '90 Mazda Capella. (2000 - 2003) My first Fatmobile. Converted to fun on veggie oil with a 2 tank setup.
    '80 Mercedes 300D. 2 tank conversion [Sold]
    '84 Mercedes 300D. 1 tank, no conversion. Replaced engine with rebuilt OM617A turbodiesel engine. Finally had good power. Engine donor for W123 coupe. (body parted out and carcass sold for scrap.)
    '85 Mercedes Benz W123 300CD Turbodiesel
    '99 Mercedes W202 C250 Turbodiesel (my darling Wife's car)[sold]
    '98 Mercedes W202 C250 Turbodiesel (my car)[sold]
    '06 Musso Sports Crew Cab well body. [Head gasket blew!]
    '04 Rexton SUV 2.9L Turbodiesel same as Musso - Our Family car.
    '06 Musso sports Crew Cab Trayback - My hack (no air cond, no heater).

    Searching the Biofuels Forum using Google
    Adding images and/or documents to your posts


  7. #7
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony From West Oz View Post
    95% Ethanol has too much water in it to be used as a viable fuel. It will not blend with petrol unless it is dried to >99% Ethanol.
    Not entirely true. I just read the label on my bottle of Metho. It states 95% Ethanol.
    Product Usages: Fuel/Lighting, Heavy Duty Disinfector/Cleaner, General Cleaning, Dewaterer/Drier, Stain Remover, Glass Cleaner, Timber Floor Cleaner.

    I have used the same Metho to remove water from petrol fuel tanks with excellent results.
    I do agree that any Ethanol you make is way to valuable to use as fuel.

  8. #8
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    G'day Qwarla,
    The other 5% may not be water.
    There are denaturants and bittering agents added to metho.
    Have you looked at the MSDS for your particular brand of metho?

  9. #9
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    Quote Originally Posted by tillyfromparadise View Post

    Have you looked at the MSDS for your particular brand of metho?
    Yes I have. The denaturing/bittering agents have changed over the years. At one time it was petrol, but because certain people actually drink the stuff it has been changed for something less damaging to the human system, and it is less than 1%. There will always be around 5% water in household grade Metho.
    MSDS.

  10. #10
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    Re: Ethanol from wood chips

    The other consideration is that it does not actually say it can be used as a motor fuel. I know that they use metho as the fuel for little alcohol camp cooking burners.
    I do know that at the local ethanol motor fuel plant they use molecular sieve to get the last 5% of water out to use it as a motor fuel.


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