Biomass is a crucial energy resource used for the generation of electricity and transportation fuels. Microalgae exhibit a high content of biocomponents which makes them a potential feedstock for the generation of ecofriendly biofuels. Biofuels derived from microalgae are suitable carbon-neutral replacements for petroleum. Fermentation is the major process for metabolic conversion of microalgal biocompounds into biofuels such as bioethanol and higher alcohols. In this review, we explored the use of all three major biocomponents of microalgal biomass including carbohydrates, proteins, and lipids for maximum biofuel generation. Application of several pretreatment methods for enhancement the bioavailability of substrates (simple sugar, amino acid, and fatty acid) was discussed. This review goes one step further to discuss how to direct these biocomponents for the generation of various biofuels (bioethanol, higher alcohol, and biodiesel) through fermentation and transesterification processes. Such an approach would result in the maximum utilization of biomasses for economically feasible biofuel production.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Energy (miscellaneous)
- Control and Optimization
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering