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Biochemicals from food waste and recalcitrant biomass via syngas fermentation: A review

Wainaina, Steven, Horváth, Ilona Sárvári, Taherzadeh, Mohammad J.
Bioresource technology 2018 v.248 pp. 113-121
alcohols, batch systems, biomass, bioreactors, carbon monoxide, carboxylic acids, fermentation, food waste, gasification, hybrids, hydrogen, lignocellulose, mass transfer, mixed culture, synthesis gas, value added
An effective method for the production of value-added chemicals from food waste and lignocellulosic materials is a hybrid thermal-biological process, which involves gasification of the solid materials to syngas (primarily CO and H2) followed by fermentation. This paper reviews the recent advances in this process. The special focus is on the cultivation methods that involve the use of single strains, defined mixed cultures and undefined mixed cultures for production of carboxylic acids and higher alcohols. A rate limiting step in these processes is the low mass transfer between the gas and the liquid phases. Therefore, novel techniques that can enhance the gas-liquid mass transfer including membrane- and trickle-bed bioreactors were discussed. Such bioreactors have shown promising results in increasing the volumetric mass transfer coefficient (kLa). High gas pressure also influences the mass transfer in certain batch processes, although the presence of impurities in the gas would impede the process.