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Biohydrogen production

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Presentation on theme: "Biohydrogen production"— Presentation transcript:

1 Biohydrogen production
Unit of Functional Bionanomaterials School of Biosciences Prof Lynne E Macaskie Rafael Orozco Dr Mark D Redwood

2 Why bio-hydrogen? Unique combination of advantages:
Renewable/sustainable energy sources Organic matter and sunlight Inherently free of fuel cell poisons CO, H2S Waste disposal food waste agricultural residues Simple/cheap process Ambient temperature & pressure

3 Solar energy means large
Method Net energy / area kWh/day/hectare Source UoB’s bio hydrogen (UK) (+ gate fees) Biowaste2energy Photovoltaics (PV) 665 (Bavaria) Bavaria Solarpark Wind 480 (UK, on shore) MacKay (2009) Anaerobic Digestion (AD) 425 (+ gate fees) Vagron, Netherlands* Plant-derived bio-fuels ~120 (UK) Algae-derived bio-diesel Purportedly better than plants * Including parasitic energy and total site area. Published values use the raw energy generated and only the space occupied by the digester.

4 Recycle excess bacterial cells for metal recovery and catalysis
Biohydrogen at UoB Recycle excess bacterial cells for metal recovery and catalysis H2 Dark Fermentation Photo- Fermentation Sugary waste Clean water Organic acids We focus on 2 methods Dark fermentation Photofermentation

5 E. coli fermentation Bench scale (1ml-20L) Pilot scale (120 L)

6 Dark fermentation in E. coli
Ideally: 1 Glucose  2 H2 + 1 acetate + 1 ethanol + 2 CO2 We select E. coli because Fast aerobic growth Tolerance to O2 during anaerobic fermentation Best tolerance to H2 partial pressure No sporulation Best-characterised genetic background for GM E.g. removal of uptake hydrogenases

7 Fermentation with product separation
Anion Cation Anion-selective membrane +/- Fermentation Concentrated organic acids - + Electrodialysis uses an anion selective membrane and direct current OAs cross the membrane due to negative charge

8 Photofermentation Organic acids  H2 + CO2 Purple non-sulphur bacteria
Rhodobacter spp. Anoxygenic photosynthesis High yield, broad substrate range e.g. Lactate  6 H2 e.g. Butyrate  10 H2 H2 produced by Nitrogenase enzyme Very sensitive to NH4+ Select wastes with high C/N Light conversion efficiency Up to ~5%

9 Solar hydrogen production in Birmingham
March, June and even October Logging equipment for light intensity and temperature. Water heater pumps 30 °C water to the jackets

10 Photobioreactors

11 Solar simulation PBR at Birmingham
Tubular array Simulates 0.5 m2 of sunlit area Variable volume up to 50 L Lamps deliver programmed light patterns Simulates any location or season

12 Commercialising biohydrogen
Spin-out company: Biowaste2energy Ltd Formed in 2008 Startup investment from Modern Waste Purpose: to commercialise waste to hydrogen Business model Gate fees for disposal of biodegradable waste Biodegradable waste restricted from landfill Generate electricity from H2 Renewables Obligation Certificate. Route to market Add-on to anaerobic digestion

13 Thank you for your time

14 How much bioH2 can we make from biowaste?
How much hydrogen energy could be regained? UK [food industry + domestic] = 24 M tpa Potential to produce 280 M kg of bio-H2 Energy value: 5.6 TWh (terawatthour) and heat UK’s electricity usage: ~350 TWh pa ~2% of UK’s total electricity demand Not including agricultural and non- food industry wastes

15 Elimination of uptake hydrogenase
Mol of H2 equivalent 1.5 1 0.5 2

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