Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Civil, Mining, and Environmental Engineering


The rapid depletion of fossil fuels, increasing environmental pollution and fluctuating oil pricing have led to the search for sustainable energy sources such as biofuels from biomass. This thesis systematically examines the bioethanol production using a series of steps, namely, pretreatment, hydrolysis, fermentation and membrane-based bioethanol separation. The feedstock used for bioethanol production were lignocellulosic biomass (potato peel) and macroalgae (Laminaria japonica – brown macroalgae). Due to the different cellular compositions of these feedstocks, the potota peel waste was enzymatically pretreated with laccase enzyme (a copper containing delignification enzyme) whereas macroalgae was pretreated with hydrothermal pretreatment to produce reducing sugar. Reducing sugar was fermented to produce bioethanol. The purification of bioethanol was performed by a novel method using direct-contact membrane distillation (DCMD) for effective bioethanol separation from fermenting broth (produced after fermentation). A polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) membrane was used in the DCMD system.

FoR codes (2008)

090701 Environmental Engineering Design, 090703 Environmental Technologies

This thesis is unavailable until Tuesday, July 16, 2024



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.