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Increase Conversion Rate of High Tannin Sorghum to Ethanol through Germination

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  2007 ASAE Annual Meeting  072555.(doi:10.13031/2013.23425)
Authors:   Shuping Yan, Xiaorong Wu, Paul A Seib, Finlay MacRitchie, Donghai Wang
Keywords:   Keywords: sorghum, germination, ethanol fermentation, tannin, starch digestibility, protein digestibility

Tannin plays a major role in retarding the starch degradation and protein digestion in high-tannin sorghum cultivars. Starch degradation and protein digestibility are important for ethanol production. Germination has been used to improve nutritional values of grain sorghum for food applications. However, no research has been conducted to study the effect of germination on conversion rate of grain sorghum in ethanol production. The objective of this research was to investigate the effects of germination on performance of high tannin grain sorghum in ethanol production. Ethanol fermentation was conducted on high tannin sorghum samples germinated for 0, 3, and 4 days. Samples were analyzed for tannin, starch, protein, free amino nitrogen (FAN), and glucose content. Endosperm structures and flour pasting properties of the germinated and non-germinated sorghum samples were examined by using scanning electron microscope (SEM) and rapid viscoanalyzer (RVA). The results showed that germination reduced tannin content from 3.96% to negligible levels, increased the starch digestibility by 13 to 20 % and the protein digestibility by 5 to 10 folds, and shortened the fermentation time for ethanol production by 24-36 hours and increased ethanol yields by 2 to 3%.

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