Steam explosion as sustainable biomass pretreatment technique for biofuel production: Characteristics and challenges

Hoang A. T., Nguyen X. P., Duong X. Q., Ağbulut Ü., Len C., Nguyen P. Q. P., ...More

Bioresource Technology, vol.385, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 385
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.biortech.2023.129398
  • Journal Name: Bioresource Technology
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, PASCAL, Aqualine, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), BIOSIS, Biotechnology Research Abstracts, CAB Abstracts, Chemical Abstracts Core, Compendex, EMBASE, Environment Index, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, Geobase, INSPEC, MEDLINE, Pollution Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Keywords: Biofuel production, Biomass pretreatment, Reaction mechanism, Steam explosion, Technological characteristics
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: No


The biorefining process of lignocellulosic biomass has recently emerged as one of the most profitable biofuel production options. However, pretreatment is required to improve the recalcitrant lignocellulose's enzymatic conversion efficiency. Among biomass pretreatment methods, the steam explosion is an eco-friendly, inexpensive, and effective approach to pretreating biomass, significantly promoting biofuel production efficiency and yield. This review paper critically presents the steam explosion's reaction mechanism and technological characteristics for lignocellulosic biomass pretreatment. Indeed, the principles of steam explosion technology for lignocellulosic biomass pretreatment were scrutinized. Moreover, the impacts of process factors on pretreatment efficiency and sugar recovery for the following biofuel production were also discussed in detail. Finally, the limitations and prospects of steam explosion pretreatment were mentioned. Generally, steam explosion technology applications could bring great potential in pretreating biomass, although deeper studies are needed to deploy this method on industrial scales.