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Bioresour Technol. 2011 Mar;102(6):4489-94. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2010.11.117. Epub 2010 Dec 3.

The effect of high intensity mixing on the enzymatic hydrolysis of concentrated cellulose fiber suspensions.

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University of Wisconsin-Madison, 4725 Engineering Hall, 1415 Engineering Drive, Madison, WI 53706, USA.


Enzymatic hydrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass in a high shear environment was examined. The conversion of cellulose to glucose in samples mixed in a torque rheometer producing shear flows similar to those found in twin screw extruders was greater than that of unmixed samples. In addition, there is a synergistic effect of mixing and enzymatic hydrolysis; mixing increases the rate of cellulose conversion while the increased conversion facilitates mixing. The synergy appears to result in part from particle size reduction, which is more significant when hydrolysis occurs during intense mixing.

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