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System and method for preextraction of hemicellulose through using a continuous prehydrolysis and steam explosion pretreatment process

Image Number 9 for United States Patent #8057639.

A system has been developed for pretreating cellulosic biomass feed stock including: a first pressurized reactor receiving the feed stock, wherein the feed stock undergoes hydrolysis in the first pressurized reactor; a sealing device having a first pressurized coupling to a feedstock discharge port of the first pressurized reactor, and a second pressurized coupling to a second pressurized reactor; a drain for a liquid including dissolved hemi-cellulosic material extracted from the feed stock in at least one of the first pressurized reactor and the sealing and extraction device; the second pressurized reactor assembly receiving the pressurized feed stock from the sealing device at a pressure substantially greater than the pressure in the first pressurized reactor, wherein cells of the feed stock are infused with water in the second pressurized reactor, and an expansion device downstream of the second pressurized reactor assembly, wherein the expansion device rapidly releases the pressure of the feed stock discharged from the second pressurized reactor such that the feed stock undergoes a steam explosion reaction.

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