Nutrient, water, and soil type mangement of biofuel feedstock production by corn, sorghum, and switchgrass

PhD Dissertation:

Roland Ahouelete Yaovi Holou (2010). Nutrient, water, and soil type mangement of biofuel feedstock production by corn, sorghum, and switchgrass. University of Missouri–Columbia (USA). Degree Doctor of Philosophy In Plant, Insect, and Microbial Sciences (Plant Biology and Genetics).

Dissertation Main Advisor: Prof Gene Stevens, 

Co-Advisor: Prof Bill Folk

PDF of the  PhD Dissertation
ABSTRACT: Efficient use of biomass to produce biofuel and the development of more drought tolerant crops can contribute to helping address current and future problems faced by mankind, and are the focus of this dissertation. Objectives of experiments done in Portageville, Missouri, from 2007 to 2009 were to: (1) determine the effect of nitrogen (N) fertilization rate on the grain yield, the content and yield of oil, protein, starch, and the nutrient removal by corn; (2) determine the effect of N fertilization rate and the soil type on the biomass, juice, bagasse, sugars yield, and the nutrient removal by sweet sorghum; and to (3) determine the best date to harvest switchgrass in order to maximize biomass production with minimum nutrient removal. We found that in contrast to sweet sorghum, corn required 179 to 224 kg N ha-1 for maximum corn grain yield. Sweet sorghum mostly responded to N fertilization only on clay soil; loam and sand soils had enough N when planted in a cotton/soybean rotation. However, the soil type and N rate highly impacted a variety of sweet sorghum yields, with the optimum yield recorded with 67 kg N ha-1 if sweet sorghum is grown after soybean or cotton. N fertilization changed the oil, protein, mineral, and carbohydrate composition of the corn kernel. In general, the increase of N fertilization rate increased the grain yield and also the uptake of most nutrients, suggesting that nutrient removal will be critical for biofuel production from corn. The nutrient removal by sweet sorghum significantly depended on the year, soil type and N rate. The return of the leaves and the bagasse to the soil significantly reduced the nutrient removal by sweet sorghum. In general, the loam is the best soil type to produce corn and sweet sorghum in order to maximize biomass, and carbohydrates yield, and consequently biofuel production.
Switchgrass cv. Alamo produced twice the amount of biomass as the Blackwell cultivars. From July to November the nutrient uptake in the aboveground biomass decreased and their sink was successfully determined. Harvesting switchgrass biomass in late November is appropriate to minimize the nutrient removal, maximize biomass yield and reduce the biomass drying cost.
Experiments performed in Columbia, MO, focused upon beginning to measure the root and the leaf responses of sorghum varieties Tx7000, Tx642, RTx2817, Px898012, and M81E compared to a well-studied corn variety, FR697 to limiting water. Using two systems modeled after the work of Dr. R. Sharp and colleagues, we found significant differences across the varieties. Drought stress significantly reduced the biomass yield and changed the morphology of the roots, suggesting that it can significantly impact the biofuel production from these crops. A combination of the change in the root protein content and the leaf and root lengths correlated with the drought tolerance of the varieties studied.

        


PhD Dissertations

1993

Phytosociology, ecology, grazing value, productivity and carrying capacity of natural pasturelands at Nikki-Kalale in Northern Benin

PhD Dissertation: SINSIN Brice (1993). Phytosociology, ecology, grazing value, productivity and carrying capacity of natural pasturelands at Nikki-Kalale in Northern Benin. PhD, ULB, Belgium, 353 p. Promotor: Prof Jean Lejoly.

 

2001

Phytosociology, ecology, production and carrying capacity of rangelands surrounding Monts Kouffé (Benin)

PhD Dissertation:  Marcel R. B. HOUINATO (2001). Phytosociology, ecology, production and carrying capacity of rangelands surrounding Monts Kouffé (Benin). Free University of Brussels, Belgium. 264 pages. Promotor: Prof. Jean LEJOLY.

 

2005

Tropical Grasses Silicification: Genetic Interspecific Variation, Influence of Growth Conditions and Relationship with the Foliar Structure

PhD Dissertation:  Valentin Kindomihou (2005). Tropical Grasses Silicification: Genetic Interspecific Variation, Influence of Growth Conditions and Relationship with the Foliar Structure. Laboratory of Plant Ecology and Biogeochemistry, Botanical Garden Jean Massart, Interfaculty School of Bioengineers, Free University of Brussels, Belgium. 193 pages. Promotors: Prof Pierre Meerts (Belgique) & Prof Brice Sinsin (Benin).

 

2008

Poverty Dynamics and Agricultural Practices for Environment Conservation in African Rural Area: the Case of Adja plateau in Southern Benin

PhD Dissertation: Emile N. HOUNGBO (2008). Poverty Dynamics and Agricultural Practices for Environment Conservation in African Rural Area: the Case of Adja plateau in Southern Benin. University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin, 309 pages. Director: Prof. Brice A. SINSIN.

 

2010

Nutrient, water, and soil type mangement of biofuel feedstock production by corn, sorghum, and switchgrass. 

PhD Dissertation: Roland Ahouelete Yaovi Holou (2010). Nutrient, water, and soil type mangement of biofuel feedstock production by corn, sorghum, and switchgrass. University of Missouri–Columbia (USA). Degree Doctor of Philosophy In Plant, Insect, and Microbial Sciences (Plant Biology and Genetics). Dissertation Main Advisor: Prof Gene Stevens; Co-Advisor: Prof Bill Folk.

 

 

2011

Conservation biology of Tamarindus indica (Fabaceae) in Benin

PhD Dissertation: FANDOHAN Adandé Belarmain (2011). Conservation biology of Tamarindus indica (Fabaceae) in Benin, West Africa. University of Abomey-Calavi. Benin. ? pages. Promotor: Prof. Brice SINSIN.

 

Lions of West Africa Ecology of lion (Panthera leo Linnaeus 1758) populations and human-lion conflicts in Pendjari Biosphere Reserve, North Benin

PhD Dissertation:  Etotépé A. SOGBOHOSSOU (2011). Lions of West Africa Ecology of lion (Panthera leo Linnaeus 1758) populations and human-lion conflicts in Pendjari Biosphere Reserve, North Benin. University of Leiden, The Netherlands. 158 p. Promotors: Geert R. de SNOO & Brice SINSIN Co-Promotor: Hans H. de IONGH.

 

2012

Analysis of the impact of teak distribution (Tectona grandis L.f.) on landscape structure in the Atlantic Department (Southern Benin)

PhD Dissertation: TOYI Sêwanoudé Scholastique Mireille (2012). Analysis of the impact of teak distribution (Tectona grandis L.f.) on landscape structure in the Atlantic Department (Southern Benin). University of  Abomey-Calavi, Benin. 216 pages.   Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Ir. Brice SINSIN (Benin) &  Prof. Dr. Ir. Jan BOGAERT (Belgium).

 

Ecological gap analysis: Assessing the ecological effectiveness of Pendjari Biosphere Reserve in biodiversity conservation in Bénin (West Africa)

PhD Dissertation:  Dehouegnon Thierry HOUEHANOU (2012). Ecological gap analysis: Assessing the ecological effectiveness of Pendjari Biosphere Reserve in biodiversity conservation in Benin (West Africa). UNIVERSITE OF ABOMEY-CALAVI, Benin. 179 pages. Promotor: Prof.  Dr. Ir. Brice A. SINSIN.

2013

Occurrence’s areas and eco-ethology of colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus and Procolobus verus) in Benin.

PhD Dissertation: Sylvie Gisèle DJOSSOU DJEGO (2013). Occurrence’s areas and eco-ethology of colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus and Procolobus verus) in Benin. Ecole Doctorale Pluridisciplinaire, BENIN, 195 pages. Supervisors : SINSIN Augustin Brice (Bénin) et HUYNEN Marie-Claude (Belgique).

 

Feeding ecology and habitat use of bovid species in Pendjari Biosphere Reserve, Benin (West Africa)

PhD Dissertation:  Chabi Adéyèmi Marc Sylvestre DJAGOUN (2013). Feeding ecology and habitat use of bovid species in Pendjari Biosphere Reserve, Benin (West Africa). Faculty of Agronomic Sciences, University of Abomey Calavi, Benin. 162 pages.  Director: Prof Brice SINSIN.

 

Anthropization of landscapes in Benin: dynamics, fragmentation and agricultural development

PhD Dissertation: Adi Mama (2013). Anthropization of landscapes in Benin: dynamics, fragmentation and agricultural development. Interfaculty School of Bioengineers, Department of Landscape Ecology and Plant Production Systems, Faculty of Science, Free University of Brussels, Belgium, 198 pages. Promotors: Prof. DE CANNIERE Charles (Bruxelles), Prof. BOGAERT Jan (Belgique), et Prof. SINSIN Brice (Bénin).

 

Ecology of isolated trees in tropical savannas: modelling of plant species distribution and colonization of new habitats through long-distance dispersal and facilitation

PhD Dissertation: Akomian Fortuné AZIHOU (2013). Ecology of isolated trees in tropical savannas: modelling of plant species distribution and colonization of new habitats through long-distance dispersal and facilitation. University of Abomey-Calavi. Benin. 162 pages. Promotor: Prof. Brice SINSIN.

 

Methods and tools for estimating carbon dynamics in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin (West Africa).

PhD Dissertation: Sabin Guendehou (2013). Methods and tools for estimating carbon dynamics in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin (West Africa). Supervisors: Professors Mansourou Moudachirou, Brice Sinsin, Raisa Makipää and Pasi Puttonen.

 

Anthropization of landscapes in Benin: dynamics, fragmentation and agricultural development

PhD Dissertation: Adi Mama (2013). Anthropization of landscapes in Benin: dynamics, fragmentation and agricultural development. Interfaculty School of Bioengineers, Department of Landscape Ecology and Plant Production Systems, Faculty of Science, Free University of Brussels, Belgium, 198 pages. Promotors: Prof. DE CANNIERE Charles (Bruxelles), Prof. BOGAERT Jan (Belgique), et Prof. SINSIN Brice (Bénin).

 

Methods and tools for estimating carbon dynamics in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin (West Africa).

PhD Dissertation: Sabin Guendehou (2013). Methods and tools for estimating carbon dynamics in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin (West Africa). Supervisors: Professors Mansourou Moudachirou, Brice Sinsin, Raisa Makipää and Pasi Puttonen.

 

Methods and tools for estimating carbon dynamics in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin (West Africa).

PhD Dissertation: Sabin Guendehou (2013). Methods and tools for estimating carbon dynamics in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin (West Africa). Supervisors: Professors Mansourou Moudachirou, Brice Sinsin, Raisa Makipää and Pasi Puttonen.

 

Anthropization of landscapes in Benin: dynamics, fragmentation and agricultural development

PhD Dissertation: Adi Mama (2013). Anthropization of landscapes in Benin: dynamics, fragmentation and agricultural development. Interfaculty School of Bioengineers, Department of Landscape Ecology and Plant Production Systems, Faculty of Science, Free University of Brussels, Belgium, 198 pages. Promotors: Prof. DE CANNIERE Charles (Bruxelles), Prof. BOGAERT Jan (Belgique), et Prof. SINSIN Brice (Bénin).

 

2014

Ecology of plant communities in the Biosphere Reserve of Pendjari, BENIN (West Africa)

PhD Dissertation:  Eméline P.S. ASSEDE (2014). Ecology of plant communities in the Biosphere Reserve of Pendjari, BENIN (West Africa). University of Abomey-Calavi, Bénin. 364 p. Supervisor : Prof Brice Sinsin.

 

2015

Analysis of the mode and utilization technologies of palm oil mill wastes and its application for the production of three tropical vegetables (Lycopersicon esculentum, Amaranthus cruentus, Corchorus olitorius) in Southern Benin

PhD Dissertation:  KOURA Windékpè Tatiana (2015). Analysis of the mode and utilization technologies of palm oil mill wastes and its application for the production of three tropical vegetables (Lycopersicon esculentum, Amaranthus cruentus, Corchorus olitorius) in Southern Benin, Aménagement et Gestion des Ressources Naturelles, Faculté des Sciences Agronomiques, Université d’Abomey Calavi, République du Bénin, 252p. Director: Prof. Brice A. SINSIN.

 

Knowing bowalization, its impact on biodiversity, soil and human livelihoods in Benin (West Africa)

PhD Dissertation: Padonou Elie (2015). Knowing bowalization, its impact on biodiversity, soil and human livelihoods in Benin (West Africa). PhD Thesis, Faculty of Agronomic Sciences, University of Abomey-Calavi, Republic of Benin, 172 pages. Promotor: Prof. Ir. Brice SINSIN.

 

2016

Managment and modeling of the transhumance pasture dynamic in a climatic variabilies context in North-East of Benin

PhD Dissertation: Paolo Lesse (2016). Managment and modeling of the transhumance pasture dynamic  in a climatic variabilies context in North-East of Benin. University of Abomey-Calavi, Laboratoire d’Ecologie Appliquée. 299p Promotor: Prof. Marcel R. B. HOUINATO.

 

Dongas assessment: Processes, Management and valorized Opportunities in Karimama District (Northern Benin)

PhD Dissertation: AVAKOUDJO Julien (2016). Dongas assessment: Processes, Management and valorized Opportunities in Karimama District (Northern Benin). ÉCOLE DOCTORALE DES SCIENCES AGRONOMIQUES. Aménagement Gestion des Ressources Naturelles. Promoteur : Professeur Brice Augustin SINSIN.

 

 

2017

Ethnobotany and Ecology of Mimusops andongensis Hiern and Mimusops kummel Bruce Ex A. DC: implications for the species management and conservation in Benin (West Africa)

PhD Dissertation: SINASSON Gisèle (2017). Ethnobotany and Ecology of Mimusops andongensis Hiern and Mimusops kummel Bruce Ex A. DC: implications for the species management and conservation in Benin (West Africa). Ecole Doctorale des Sciences Agronomiques, Université d’Abomey-Calavi. Benin. 214 pages.  Supervisors: Prof. Brice Sinsin and Prof. Charlie Shackleton ( South Africa).

 

Diversity, leaf biomass of fodder trees and carrying capacity of rangelands in the Guineo-Congolese / Sudanian transition zone of Benin

PhD Dissertation:  Clément SEWADE (2017). Diversity, leaf biomass of fodder trees and carrying capacity of rangelands in the Guineo-Congolese / Sudanian transition zone of Benin. Doctoral School of Water and Agronomic Sciences, University of Abomey Calavi, Benin. 242 pages. Promotor: Prof. Dr Ir. Marcel Romuald Benjamin HOUINATO.

 

2018

Estimation and monitoring of carbon fluxes in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin, West Africa

PhD Dissertation: Cedric GOUSSANOU 2018. Estimation and monitoring of carbon fluxes in tropical forest ecosystems in Benin, West Africa. Ecole Doctorale Pluridisciplinaire, « Espaces, Cultures Et Developpement », Université d’Abomey-Calavi, BENIN, 129p.  Promotor: Prof. Dr Ir. Brice SINSIN. 

 

 

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  • Building of the Laboratory of Applied Ecology (LEA). (Credit photo: Dr Akomian Fortuné Azihou / LEA, Abomey-Calavi, Benin, October 2018)
    Building of the Laboratory of Applied Ecology (LEA). (Credit photo: Dr Akomian Fortuné Azihou / LEA, Abomey-Calavi, Benin, October 2018)
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