SAMARAHAN: A Japanese technology, which is still in its pilot stage, may be used on sago to produce ethanol.

Kansai Chemical Engineering Company Limited of Bio-Energy Corporation presdent Dr Hideo Noda said in Japan, several projects on bio-ethanol production from cellulosic materials had been carried out successfully.

“In our project, a hydro-thermal pre-treatment without adding sulfuric acid had been introduced and ethanol fermentation had been performed successfully with rice straw, wheat straw, bagasse and so on.

“The process could also be applicable to the cellulosic part of sago, but this needs to be further explored,” he told The Star on the sidelines of the 2nd Asean Sago Symposium here yesterday.

Nado said the present pilot technology had a capacity of 20kg per hour and the plant was located in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Higashi Futami, Hyogo.

“One tonne of rice straw can produce 200 litres of ethanol,” he said.

He said his company together with Mitsu-bishi Heavy Industries Mechatronics Systems Limited, Bio-Energy Corporation, Hyogo Environmental Advancement Association and Kobe University initiated the pilot project about four years ago to meet Japan’s rising needs for biofuel.

source: thestar

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