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Preserving Aryl Ether Linkages and Higher Yields of Isolated Lignin through Biomass Fibrillation

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journal contribution
posted on 12.12.2019, 17:40 by Samarthya Bhagia, Arthur J. Ragauskas
Ball milling is used for size reduction of biomass for isolating lignin. However, it is known that it can lead to some structural alteration of lignin. Fibrillation using ultrafriction grinding is a newer size reduction technology which was applied to poplar for isolating cellulolytic enzyme lignin. Compositional analysis of poplar, enzymatic hydrolysis yield, water retention value, lignin yield, lignin structural characterization, and lignin molecular weight analysis were carried out to compare lignin isolated from fibrillated and ball milled poplar. By using fibrillation instead of planetary ball milling for size reduction of poplar, higher β-O-4′ linkage content, lignin yield, and molecular weight were obtained. Replacing ball milling with fibrillation for size reduction allows recovery of lignin whose structure is closer to that of lignin in biomass.