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Ethanol Production

Geena Brown
JGEN 200 Project No. 5
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What is ethanol?
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Fuel made from grains or biomass

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Sources of Ethanol
Corn Sugar-Cane


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Types of Production
1. Dry-Milling
-More prominent -Less expensive

2. Wet-Milling
-Higher yield

The BIG Picture

Enzyme: build or break molecules Amylase: breaks down sugar chains

Yeast: turns sugar into alcohol

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Grain is delivered to the plant and stored.

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Kernels are ground to a powder by a rotating hammer.

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Water and alpha-amylase added. Starch is broken into sugars.

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Yeast and glucoamylase are added and the mash sits for over 50 hours.
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C6H12O6 2 C2H5OH + 2 CO2 Glucose 2 Ethanol + 2 Carbon Dioxide


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Water is removed with a molecular sieve. The mixture passes through a filter that catches ethanol molecules.

Small amounts of are gasoline added to prevent human consumption.

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Ethanol is shipped to refineries to be mixed with oil.

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Solids and water separated Water added to new slurry Solids dried and sold for livestock feed
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Cellulosic Ethanol
Similar to starch New enzyme needed

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Enzymes break starches into sugars. Yeast ferments sugars into ethyl-alcohol. Ethanol is purified and denatured.


American coalition for ethanol. (n.d.). Retrieved from Biofuels- poet. (2012). Retrieved from Ethanol molecule. (n.d.). Retrieved from Ethanol production process. (2012). Retrieved from Gustafson, C., & Fewell, J. (n.d.). Ethanol production - dry versus wet grind processing. (North Dakota State University)Retrieved from

Helmenstine, A. M. (n.d.). What is fermentation?. Retrieved from