Ultrasonic disintegration of microalgal biomass and consequent improvement of bioaccessibility/bioavailability in microbial fermentation

Byong Hun Jeon, Jeong A. Choi, Hyun Chul Kim, Jae Hoon Hwang, Reda A.I. Abou-Shanab, Brian A. Dempsey, John M. Regan, Jung Rae Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Microalgal biomass contains a high level of carbohydrates which can be biochemically converted to biofuels using state-of-the-art strategies that are almost always needed to employ a robust pretreatment on the biomass for enhanced energy production. In this study, we used an ultrasonic pretreatment to convert microalgal biomass (Scenedesmus obliquus YSW15) into feasible feedstock for microbial fermentation to produce ethanol and hydrogen. The effect of sonication condition was quantitatively evaluated with emphases on the characterization of carbohydrate components in microalgal suspension and on subsequent production of fermentative bioenergy. Method. Scenedesmus obliquus YSW15 was isolated from the effluent of a municipal wastewater treatment plant. The sonication durations of 0, 10, 15, and 60 min were examined under different temperatures at a fixed frequency and acoustic power resulted in morphologically different states of microalgal biomass lysis. Fermentation was performed to evaluate the bioenergy production from the non-sonicated and sonicated algal biomasses after pretreatment stage under both mesophilic (35°C) and thermophilic (55°C) conditions. Results: A 15 min sonication treatment significantly increased the concentration of dissolved carbohydrates (0.12 g g-1), which resulted in an increase of hydrogen/ethanol production through microbial fermentation. The bioconvertibility of microalgal biomass sonicated for 15 min or longer was comparable to starch as a control, indicating a high feasibility of using microalgae for fermentative bioenergy production. Increasing the sonication duration resulted in increases in both algal surface hydrophilicity and electrostatic repulsion among algal debris dispersed in aqueous solution. Scanning electron microscope images supported that ruptured algal cell allowed fermentative bacteria to access the inner space of the cell, evidencing an enhanced bioaccessibility. Sonication for 15 min was the best for fermentative bioenergy (hydrogen/ethanol) production from microalga, and the productivity was relatively higher for thermophilic (55°C) than mesophilic (35°C) condition. Conclusion: These results demonstrate that more bioavailable carbohydrate components are produced through the ultrasonic degradation of microalgal biomass, and thus the process can provide a high quality source for fermentative bioenergy production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number37
JournalBiotechnology for Biofuels
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 22 2013

Fingerprint

Disintegration
Ultrasonics
Biomass
Fermentation
Biological Availability
bioavailability
fermentation
Sonication
bioenergy
Carbohydrates
biomass
carbohydrate
Scenedesmus
Hydrogen
ethanol
Ethanol
hydrogen
Microalgae
microalga
Biofuels

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy(all)
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

Cite this

Jeon, Byong Hun ; Choi, Jeong A. ; Kim, Hyun Chul ; Hwang, Jae Hoon ; Abou-Shanab, Reda A.I. ; Dempsey, Brian A. ; Regan, John M. ; Kim, Jung Rae. / Ultrasonic disintegration of microalgal biomass and consequent improvement of bioaccessibility/bioavailability in microbial fermentation. In: Biotechnology for Biofuels. 2013 ; Vol. 6, No. 1.
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Ultrasonic disintegration of microalgal biomass and consequent improvement of bioaccessibility/bioavailability in microbial fermentation. / Jeon, Byong Hun; Choi, Jeong A.; Kim, Hyun Chul; Hwang, Jae Hoon; Abou-Shanab, Reda A.I.; Dempsey, Brian A.; Regan, John M.; Kim, Jung Rae.

In: Biotechnology for Biofuels, Vol. 6, No. 1, 37, 22.03.2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Ultrasonic disintegration of microalgal biomass and consequent improvement of bioaccessibility/bioavailability in microbial fermentation

AU - Jeon, Byong Hun

AU - Choi, Jeong A.

AU - Kim, Hyun Chul

AU - Hwang, Jae Hoon

AU - Abou-Shanab, Reda A.I.

AU - Dempsey, Brian A.

AU - Regan, John M.

AU - Kim, Jung Rae

PY - 2013/3/22

Y1 - 2013/3/22

N2 - Background: Microalgal biomass contains a high level of carbohydrates which can be biochemically converted to biofuels using state-of-the-art strategies that are almost always needed to employ a robust pretreatment on the biomass for enhanced energy production. In this study, we used an ultrasonic pretreatment to convert microalgal biomass (Scenedesmus obliquus YSW15) into feasible feedstock for microbial fermentation to produce ethanol and hydrogen. The effect of sonication condition was quantitatively evaluated with emphases on the characterization of carbohydrate components in microalgal suspension and on subsequent production of fermentative bioenergy. Method. Scenedesmus obliquus YSW15 was isolated from the effluent of a municipal wastewater treatment plant. The sonication durations of 0, 10, 15, and 60 min were examined under different temperatures at a fixed frequency and acoustic power resulted in morphologically different states of microalgal biomass lysis. Fermentation was performed to evaluate the bioenergy production from the non-sonicated and sonicated algal biomasses after pretreatment stage under both mesophilic (35°C) and thermophilic (55°C) conditions. Results: A 15 min sonication treatment significantly increased the concentration of dissolved carbohydrates (0.12 g g-1), which resulted in an increase of hydrogen/ethanol production through microbial fermentation. The bioconvertibility of microalgal biomass sonicated for 15 min or longer was comparable to starch as a control, indicating a high feasibility of using microalgae for fermentative bioenergy production. Increasing the sonication duration resulted in increases in both algal surface hydrophilicity and electrostatic repulsion among algal debris dispersed in aqueous solution. Scanning electron microscope images supported that ruptured algal cell allowed fermentative bacteria to access the inner space of the cell, evidencing an enhanced bioaccessibility. Sonication for 15 min was the best for fermentative bioenergy (hydrogen/ethanol) production from microalga, and the productivity was relatively higher for thermophilic (55°C) than mesophilic (35°C) condition. Conclusion: These results demonstrate that more bioavailable carbohydrate components are produced through the ultrasonic degradation of microalgal biomass, and thus the process can provide a high quality source for fermentative bioenergy production.

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