INTEGRATION OF “WILLOW ENERGY” WITH EXTRACTION TECHNOLOGIES
Published: 1 Jun 2017
Abstract: Biomass is the plant material derived from the reaction between CO2 in the air, water and sunlight, via photosynthesis, to produce carbohydrates that form the building blocks of biomass. Biomass contains varying amounts of cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin and a small amount of other extractives. Woody plant species are typically characterized by slow growth. The attention paid to particular woody plant species varies around the world, taking account of the soil and climatic factors that affect growth. In the context of northern Europe, much attention has been focused on the woody species, especially willow and poplar. These wood plants grow 6-10-fold faster in comparison to other trees. One hectare of willow (25% moisture) produces approximately 13 tonne of willow every year with an energy content of 13.2 Giga Joules (GJ) per ton. Therefore one hectare produces 172 GJ’s of energy per year. Our investigation deals with extractives which content about 15% of whole biomass. The extracts obtained from willow and poplar bark and foliage, and purified phytochemicals arising from these extracts, can find various applications, e.g., as biopharmaceuticals, food additives and nutraceuticals, biopesticides, and in cosmetic products. Considering the increased progress in the development of innovative biorefinery technologies, the renewable biofuel market will continue to provide substantial opportunities for potential investors in this area. We found more than 80 lipophilic constituents from raw materials of willow and poplar bark and foliage.
Keywords: willow energy, extraction technologies, biomass
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