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cellulose

Harvesting valuable chemicals from fermented sugars

Volatile fatty acids identified in this article.
Volatile fatty acids identified in this article.

Fermentation is a biological process that can convert the simple sugars from wood and other cellulosic-based feedstocks into chemical products and represents a key step in the conversion processes evaluated by NARA to convert wood residuals into biojet fuel. Gevo Inc, a NARA member, relies on specialized yeast to ferment …more

Finding ways to improve cellulase activity

 

Illustration of cellulase enzyme on cellulose. Courtesy of Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Illustration of cellulase enzyme on cellulose. Courtesy of Oak Ridge National Laboratory

 

 

 

NARA investigates conversion technologies that rely on enzymes called cellulases. Cellulases break down the cellulose and hemicellulose polymers found in wood and release simple sugars. The simple sugars can then be used to make isobutanol …more

Screening Douglas-fir trees for production of biofuels and other valuable chemicals

Douglas-fir core samples used to determine recalcitrance variability.
Douglas-fir core samples used to determine recalcitrance variability.

Douglas-fir trees are not all alike. Some grow faster, some adapt better to harsher climates and they all differ somewhat in their chemical makeup. These distinctions are due to variations in their genetic makeup. Those interested in breeding plantation trees for timber value have capitalized on genetic variation …more