Novel Enzymes in Biofuel Production

Authored by: Ranjeeta Bhari , Ram Sarup Singh

Biofuels

Print publication date:  October  2016
Online publication date:  November  2016

Print ISBN: 9781498723596
eBook ISBN: 9781315370743
Adobe ISBN:

10.1201/9781315370743-19

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Abstract

The growing concern for environmental sustainability and energy security had made the search of alternative energy sources the utmost need of the hour to synchronize environmental friendliness with biodegradability and renewability, thereby reducing reliance on petroleum products. Numerous catalytic approaches have been investigated for the production of ethanol, high-chain alcohols, alkanes, fatty acids or their esters, hydrogen, methane, and hydrocarbons. Liquid biofuels work well with the current infrastructure and internal combustion engines, representing a solution to the transportation sector. Innovations in biocatalysis and advanced biochemical processes using enzymes have contributed to the launch of biorefineries using cheaper substrates for the production of biofuels. The usefulness of amylases and now cellulases, xylanases, and monooxygenases has been much investigated for the production of alcohol-based biofuels. Researchers after exploring enzymatic transesterification of edible oils are now focusing on the transesterification of waste oils and animal tallow to biodiesel using lipases. Though much research is carried out for the production of liquid biofuels, these represent only short-term solution to the transportation sector. The use of hydrogen as biofuel, however, represents a long-term solution, and enzymatic production of hydrogen using hydrogenases has been looked forward. This chapter focuses on the developments in biocatalysis for the production of alcohol fuels, biodiesel, and biohydrogen.

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