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Bioresour Technol. 2017 Nov;244(Pt 1):641-649. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2017.08.008. Epub 2017 Aug 5.

Industrial hemp as a potential bioenergy crop in comparison with kenaf, switchgrass and biomass sorghum.

Author information

1
Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering Department, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546, United States.
2
Plant and Soils Science Department, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546, United States; Robinson Center for Appalachian Resource Sustainability (RCARS), Jackson, KY 41339, United States.
3
Energy and Environment Science and Technology, Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID 83415, United States.
4
Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering Department, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546, United States. Electronic address: j.shi@uky.edu.

Abstract

This study takes combined field trial, lab experiment, and economic analysis approaches to evaluate the potential of industrial hemp in comparison with kenaf, switchgrass and biomass sorghum. Agronomy data suggest that the per hectare yield (5437kg) of industrial hemp stem alone was at a similar level with switchgrass and sorghum; while the hemp plants require reduced inputs. Field trial also showed that ∼1230kg/ha hemp grain can be harvested in addition to stems. Results show a predicted ethanol yield of ∼82gallons/dry ton hemp stems, which is comparable to the other three tested feedstocks. A comparative cost analysis indicates that industrial hemp could generate higher per hectare gross profit than the other crops if both hemp grains and biofuels from hemp stem were counted. These combined evaluation results demonstrate that industrial hemp has great potential to become a promising regional commodity crop for producing both biofuels and value-added products.

KEYWORDS:

Biofuels; Economic analysis; Industrial hemp; Lignin; Pretreatment

PMID:
28810219
DOI:
10.1016/j.biortech.2017.08.008
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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