Modeling and simulation of a pervaporator coupled to a simultaneous saccharification-fermentation process for the ethanol production


  • Jairo Antonio Cubillos-Lobo Universidad Pedagógica y Tecnológica de Colombia
  • Felipe Bustamante-Londoño Universidad de Antioquia
  • Alejandro Acosta-Cárdenas Universidad de Antioquia



simultaneous saccharification fermentation, bioethanol, pervaporation, PDMS, silicalite, modelling and simulation, process integration


Process integration is now days considered a viable option for reducing ethanol production costs from biomass. Both experimental and simulation results have shown the benefits of coupling saccharification and fermentation as well as fermentation and pervaporation. However, the integration of simultaneous saccharification-fermentation with membrane-based in-situ removal of ethanol, which would allow reaching the benefits of this approach, has not been reported yet. This work aims to obtain the modelling and simulation’s results in the production of ethanol, from cassava starch by simultaneous saccharification and fermentation, coupled with the membranes separation, based on Silicalite PDMS, and PDMS-Silicalite.

A combined solution-diffusion mechanism and adsorption-diffusion mechanism was used for modelling the PDMS membrane where as the Maxwell-Stefan multi-component mass-transfer equations were used for modelling the silicalite membrane..A simultaneous-saccharification and fermentation process was modelled, using a multi-chain model (Michaelis-Menten) coupled with the Monod model. The maximum deviation found in the adjusted SSF model to the reported experimental data, as well as the values for PDMS and silicalite membrane models, is in the 3% range. The integrated model was used to predict the ethanol concentration during the simultaneous saccharification-fermentation process.


Download data is not yet available.

References, Consultada junio 2015.

R. Wooley et al., “Process design and costing of bioethanol technology: a tool for determining the status and direction of research and development”. Biotechnol. Prog Vol. 15, pp. 794-803, 1999.

J. Mielenz, “Ethanol production from biomass: technology and commercialization status”. Current Opinion in Microbiology. Vol. 4, pp. 324-329.2001.

C, Wyman, “Ethanol from lignocellulosic biomass: Technology, economics, and opportunities”. Bioresource Technol. Vol. 50, pp. 3-16, 1994.

H. Castaño and C. E. Mejía. “Producción de etanol a partir de almidón de yuca utilizando la estrategia de proceso sacarificaciónfermentación simultáneas (SSF)”, Vitae, Vol.15, pp. 251-258, 2008.

C. A. Cardona and Ó. J. Sánchez. “Fuel ethanol production: Process design trends and integration opportunities”, Bioresource Technology, Vol. 98, pp. 2415–2457, 2007.

K. Wasewr and V. Pangarkar. “Intensification of Recovery of Ethanol from Fermentation Broth Using Pervaporation: Economic Evaluation”. Chemical and Biochemical Engineering Quarterly. Vol. 20,pp. 135-145.2006.

F. Lipnitzki and R. Field, “Pervaporation-based hybrid process: a review of process design, application and economics”, J. Membr. Sci. Vol. 153, pp. 183-210.1999.

E. Nagy, B. Bakó and L. Szabó, “A kinetic study of the hydrolysis of maltodextrin by soluble glucoamylase”. Starch/starke. Vol. 4, pp.145-149. 1992.

G. Zanin and F. Moraes, “Modelling cassava starch saccharification with amyloglucosidase”, Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology.Vol. 57/58, pp. 617-625, 1996.

A. Kroumov, A. Modenes and M. Tait, “Development of new unstructured model for simultaneous saccharification and fermentation of starch to ethanol by recombinant strain”. Biochemical Engineering Journal. Vol. 28, pp. 243-255. 2006.

M. Matsamura and J. Hirata, “Continuous Simultaneous Saccharification and Fermentation of Raw Starch in a Membrane Reactor”, J. Chem. Tech. Biotechnol. Vol. 46, pp. 313-326.1989.

C. South, A. Hogsett and L. Lynd, “Modeling simultaneous saccharification and fermentation of lignocelluloses to ethanol in batch and continuous reactors”, Enzyme and Microbial Technology.Vol. 17, pp.797-803.1995.

K. Olofsson, A. Rudolf and G. Liden, “Designing simultaneous saccharification and fermentation for improved xylose conversion by a recombinant strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae”, Journal of Biotechnology.Vol. 134, pp.112-120.2008.

S. Ochoa, A. Yoo, J. Repke, G. Wozny and D. Yang, “Modeling and Parameter Identification of the Simultaneous Saccharification-Fermentation Process for Ethanol Production”, Biotechnol.Prog. Vol. 23, pp.1454-1462. 2007.

J. S. Vrentasand and J. L. Duda, “Diffusion in Polymer-Solvent Systems. Reexamination of the Free-Volume Theory”, J. Polymer Sci., Polymer Phys. Ed. Vol. 15, pp. 403.1977.

D. Schuring, Diffusion in Zeolites: Towards a Microscopic Understanding. Data Library Technische Uni-versiteit Eindhoven. 2002.

R. Krishna and R. Baur, “Analytic solution of the Maxwell-Stefan equations for multicomponente permeation across a zeolite membrane”, Chem. Eng. J., Vol. 97, pp. 37-45.2004.

S. Dhaval, Pervaporation of solvent mixtures using polymeric and zeolitic membranes: separation studies and modeling, Thesis Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Kentucky, 2001.

L. Li, Z. Xiao, S. Tan, L. Pu and Z. Zhang, “Composite PDMS membrane with high flux for the separation of organics from water by pervaporation”, Journal o Membrane Science, Vol. 243, pp.177-187. 2004.

D. Hofmann, L. Fritz and D. Paul, “Molecular modelling of pervaporation separation of binary mixtures with polymeric membranes”, Journal of Membrane Science, Vol. 144, pp. 145-159.1998.

S. Takegami, H. Yamada and S. Tsujii, “Pervaporation of ethanol/water mixtures using novel hydrophobic membranes containing polydimethylsiloxane”, Journal of Membrane Science, Vol. 75, pp.93-105.1992.

B. Smitha, D. Suhanya, S. Sridhar and M. Ramakrishna, “Separation of organic–organic mixtures by pervaporation—a review”, Journal of Membrane Science, Vol. 241, pp.1-21. 2004.

T. Sano, H. Yanagishita, Y. Kiyozumi, F. Mizukami and K. Haraya, “Separation of ethanol/water mixture by silicalite membrane on pervaporation”, Journal of Membrane Science, Vol. 95, pp. 221-228, 1994.

M. Nomura, T. Yamaguchi and S. Nakao, “Ethanol/water transport through silicalite membranes”, Journal of Membrane Science, Vol. 144, pp.161-171.1998.

T. C. Bowen, R. D. Noble and J. L. Falconer, “Fundamentals and applications of pervaporation through zeolite membranes”, Journal of Membrane Science, Vol. 245, pp. 1-33. 2004.

S. L. Wee, C. T. Tye and S. Bhatia, “Membrane separation process—Pervaporation through zeolite membrane”, Separation and Purification Technology, Vol. 63, pp. 500-516. 2008.

P. Izak, L. Bartovska, K. Friess, M. Sıpek and P. Uchytil, “Description of binary liquid mixtures transport through non-porous membrane by modified Maxwell–Stefan equations”, J. Membr. Sci. Vol. 214, pp. 293-309.2003.

R. Rautenbach, C. Herion and U. Meyer- Blumentoth, “Pervaporation membrane separation processes”, R.Y.M. Huang (Ed.), Membrane Science and Technology Series, Vol. 1, Chapter 3, pp. 181-191.1990.

A. Salem, A. A. Ghoreyshi and M. Jahanshahi, “A multicomponent transport model for dehydration of organic vapors by zeolite membranes”, Desalination. Vol.193, pp. 35-42. 2006.



How to Cite

Cubillos-Lobo, J. A., Bustamante-Londoño, F., & Acosta-Cárdenas, A. (2015). Modeling and simulation of a pervaporator coupled to a simultaneous saccharification-fermentation process for the ethanol production. Revista Facultad De Ingeniería, 24(40), 49–66.