A Review of Membrane Technology for Integrated Forest Biorefinery

Document Type : Review Paper


1 Department of chemical engineering, Lakehead University, 955 Oliver Road, Thunder Bay, ON, Canada P7B 5E1

2 Department of Chemical Engineering, Lakehead University, Canada

3 Department of Chemical Engineering, lakehead University, Canada

4 College of Geography and Environmental Science, Zheijiang Normal University, Jinhua, Zheijiang, PRChina


More recently, the concept of integrated forest biorefinery (IFBR) has received much attention as a promising solution for the struggling forest industry in North America and Europe to overcome its difficult financial period and competes globally. This new business paradigm offers a broad range of potentially attractive products, from bioenergy to value-added green organic chemicals in addition to traditional pulp and paper products. However, it also implies adoption of different types of appropriate separation technologies. Recent advancements in membrane technologies and their valuable applications have resulted in numerous breakthroughs in IFBR. The review of the implementation of membrane technologies for the separation of the value-added chemicals in the integrated forest biorefinery could contribute to the knowledge required for the large-scale adoption of membrane technologies in the forest industry. This paper aims to present a state-of-the-art review on the applications and the recent advancements of membrane technologies in IFBR, and their capacities to produce value-added chemicals and bioenergy. The emphasis is given to the focus areas of IFBR, particularly: the recovery of value-added chemicals, black liquor concentration, product recovery from Kraft evaporator condensates, tall oil recovery, inorganic and inorganic compounds recovery, fermentation inhibitors removal, enzyme recovery, biobutanol and bioethanol production and recovery. The paper also discusses the challenges and opportunities of this new business paradigm of forest industries.

Graphical Abstract

A Review of Membrane Technology for Integrated Forest Biorefinery


Membrane technologies for value-added chemicals recovery and bioenergy
production in IFBR are reviewed
• Challenges and opportunities of membrane technologies in IFBR are discussed
• Membrane fouling and its control in IFBR are highlighted


Main Subjects

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