Technology of Obtaining Microcrystalline Cellulose from Non-Wood Plant Raw Material

Валерій Анатолійович Барбаш, Юлія Миколаївна Нагорна


Background. For the countries without free timber storage, Ukraine in particular, there is an actual problem of searching alternative sources of plant raw material for production of cellulose-containing products, microcrystalline cellulose (MCC) specifically. Nowadays imported cotton and sulfate bleached cellulose are the main raw materials for MCC production.

Objective. The purpose of research is to study the possibility of obtaining MCC from more cheap, annually renewable plant material growing in Ukraine in huge amount, fibers of technical plants and stalks of grain plants (flax, hemp, kenaf, corn, miscanthus) using ecologically safe methods of its obtaining.

Methods. Technology of obtaining MCC from technical and grain plants was performed with using of alkali-sulfite-alcohol delignification and oxide-organosolvent treatment. The quantity of stages obtaining microcrystalline cellulose technological process was decreased due to combining of bleaching and hydrolysis processes using mixture of acetic acid and hydrogen peroxide with ratio 70:30 % respectively.

Results. MCC from flax and hemp fibers meet the requirements of national and European Pharmacopoeia. MCC from kenaf fibers, corn and miscanthus stalks don’t meet indices by their sulfate ash content and electrical conductivity, which is related to still high ash content in these fiber samples.

Conclusions. Technological conditions of obtaining MCC from bast fibers, which meets the requirements of national and European Pharmacopoeia, was proposed. It is recommended to use this product as filler for drugs production in pharmaceutical industry.


Organosolvent delignification; Raw plant material; Oxide-organosolvent treatment; Microcrystalline cellulose


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