Biohydrogen is usually produced via dark fermentation, which generates CO2 emissions and produces soluble metabolites (e.g., volatile fatty acids) with high chemical oxygen demand (COD) as the by-products, which require further treatments. In this study, mixotrophic culture of an isolated microalga (Chlorella vulgaris ESP6) was utilized to simultaneously consume CO2 and COD by-products from dark fermentation, converting them to valuable microalgae biomass. Light intensity and food to microorganism (F/M) ratio were adjusted to 150 μmol m-2 s-1 and F/M ratio, 4.5, respectively, to improve the efficiency of assimilating the soluble metabolites. The mixotrophic microalgae culture could reduce the CO2 content of dark fermentation effluent from 34% to 5% with nearly 100% consumption of soluble metabolites (mainly butyrate and acetate) in 9 days. The obtained microalgal biomass was hydrolyzed with 1.5% HCl and subsequently used as the substrate for bioH2 production with Clostridium butyricum CGS5, giving a cumulative H2 production of 1276 ml/L, a H2 production rate of 240 ml/L/h, and a H2 yield of 0.94 mol/mol sugar.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Fuel Technology
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology