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Title: Efficient Conversion of Aqueous-Waste-Carbon Compounds Into Electrons, Hydrogen, and Chemicals via Separations and Microbial Electrocatalysis

Valorization of waste streams is becoming increasingly important to improve resource recovery and economics of bioprocesses for the production of fuels. The pyrolysis process produces a significant portion of the biomass as an aqueous waste stream, called bio-oil aqueous phase (BOAP), which cannot be effectively converted into fuel. In this report, we detail the separation and utilization of this stream for the production of electrons, hydrogen, and chemicals, which can supplement fuel production improving economics of the biorefinery. Separation methods including physical separation via centrifugal separator, chemical separation via pH manipulation, and electrochemical separation via capacitive deionization are discussed. Bioelectrochemical systems (BES) including microbial fuel cells (MFCs), microbial electrolysis cells (MECs), and electro-fermentation processes are reviewed for their potential to generate current, hydrogen, and chemicals from BOAP. Recent developments in MECs using complex waste streams and electro-active biocatalyst enrichment have resulted in advancement of the technology toward performance metrics closer to commercial requirements. Current densities above 10 A/m 2 have been reported using BOAP, which suggest further work to demonstrate the technology at pilot scale should be undertaken. The research on electro-fermentation is revealing potential to generate alcohols, diols, medium chain fatty acids, esters, etc. using electrode-based electrons. In conclusion,more » the ability to derive electrons and chemical building blocks from waste streams illustrate the advancement of the BES technology and potential to push the frontiers of bioenergy generation one step further toward development of a circular bioeconomy.« less
Authors:
ORCiD logo [1] ; ORCiD logo [2] ;  [3] ;  [3] ;  [1] ;  [3] ;  [3]
  1. The Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States)
  2. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States)
  3. Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-00OR22725; Award under CHASE FOA: DE-FOA-0000812-1520; Seed Program Funding
Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Frontiers in Energy Research
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 6; Journal Issue: 0; Journal ID: ISSN 2296-598X
Publisher:
Frontiers Research Foundation
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; microbial electrolysis; bioelectrochemical; electro-fermentation; bio-oil; pyrolysis; renewable hydrogen; bio-electro-refinery; biorefinery
OSTI Identifier:
1471427
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1474861

Borole, Abhijeet P., Tsouris, Costas, Pavlostathis, Spyros G., Yiacoumi, Sotira, Lewis, Alex J., Zeng, Xiaofei, and Park, Lydia Kyoung-Eun. Efficient Conversion of Aqueous-Waste-Carbon Compounds Into Electrons, Hydrogen, and Chemicals via Separations and Microbial Electrocatalysis. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.3389/fenrg.2018.00094.
Borole, Abhijeet P., Tsouris, Costas, Pavlostathis, Spyros G., Yiacoumi, Sotira, Lewis, Alex J., Zeng, Xiaofei, & Park, Lydia Kyoung-Eun. Efficient Conversion of Aqueous-Waste-Carbon Compounds Into Electrons, Hydrogen, and Chemicals via Separations and Microbial Electrocatalysis. United States. doi:10.3389/fenrg.2018.00094.
Borole, Abhijeet P., Tsouris, Costas, Pavlostathis, Spyros G., Yiacoumi, Sotira, Lewis, Alex J., Zeng, Xiaofei, and Park, Lydia Kyoung-Eun. 2018. "Efficient Conversion of Aqueous-Waste-Carbon Compounds Into Electrons, Hydrogen, and Chemicals via Separations and Microbial Electrocatalysis". United States. doi:10.3389/fenrg.2018.00094.
@article{osti_1471427,
title = {Efficient Conversion of Aqueous-Waste-Carbon Compounds Into Electrons, Hydrogen, and Chemicals via Separations and Microbial Electrocatalysis},
author = {Borole, Abhijeet P. and Tsouris, Costas and Pavlostathis, Spyros G. and Yiacoumi, Sotira and Lewis, Alex J. and Zeng, Xiaofei and Park, Lydia Kyoung-Eun},
abstractNote = {Valorization of waste streams is becoming increasingly important to improve resource recovery and economics of bioprocesses for the production of fuels. The pyrolysis process produces a significant portion of the biomass as an aqueous waste stream, called bio-oil aqueous phase (BOAP), which cannot be effectively converted into fuel. In this report, we detail the separation and utilization of this stream for the production of electrons, hydrogen, and chemicals, which can supplement fuel production improving economics of the biorefinery. Separation methods including physical separation via centrifugal separator, chemical separation via pH manipulation, and electrochemical separation via capacitive deionization are discussed. Bioelectrochemical systems (BES) including microbial fuel cells (MFCs), microbial electrolysis cells (MECs), and electro-fermentation processes are reviewed for their potential to generate current, hydrogen, and chemicals from BOAP. Recent developments in MECs using complex waste streams and electro-active biocatalyst enrichment have resulted in advancement of the technology toward performance metrics closer to commercial requirements. Current densities above 10 A/m2 have been reported using BOAP, which suggest further work to demonstrate the technology at pilot scale should be undertaken. The research on electro-fermentation is revealing potential to generate alcohols, diols, medium chain fatty acids, esters, etc. using electrode-based electrons. In conclusion, the ability to derive electrons and chemical building blocks from waste streams illustrate the advancement of the BES technology and potential to push the frontiers of bioenergy generation one step further toward development of a circular bioeconomy.},
doi = {10.3389/fenrg.2018.00094},
journal = {Frontiers in Energy Research},
number = 0,
volume = 6,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {9}
}

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