Faculty Advisor

DiBiasio, David

Faculty Advisor

Zhou, Hong Susan

Project Center

Shanghai, China


Biomass is becoming an increasingly popular source for alternative energy. Cellulosic biomass, an alternative to petroleum, is comprised of a molecule called lignocellulose. Lignocellulose must be broken down into glucose chains for fermentation. This process requires several intermediate steps which are time consuming, costly, and ineffective. This project studied simultaneous saccharification and fermentation, an alternative process to break down lignocellulose whereby all the intermediate processes were conducted simultaneously while undergoing yeast fermentation. Temperature, substrate concentration and pH factors were studied to determine the optimal operating conditions for this process. The optimal conditions were determined to be 35C, 40 g/L of glucose, and a pH of 4.5.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2011


Chemical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Chemical Engineering