A biorefinery from Nannochloropsis sp. microalga - Extraction of oils and pigments. Production of biohydrogen from the leftover biomass

B. P. Nobre, F. Villalobos, B. E. Barragán, A. C. Oliveira, A. P. Batista, P. A.S.S. Marques, R. L. Mendes, H. Sovová, A. F. Palavra, L. Gouveia

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Abstract

The microalga Nannochloropsis sp. was used in this study, in a biorefinery context, as biomass feedstock for the production of fatty acids for biodiesel, biohydrogen and high added-value compounds. The microalgal biomass, which has a high lipid and pigment content (mainly carotenoids), was submitted to supercritical CO 2 extraction. The temperature, pressure and solvent flow-rate were evaluated to check their effect on the extraction yield. The best operational conditions to extract 33g lipids /100g drybiomass were found to be at 40°C, 300bar and a CO 2 flow-rate of 0.62g/min. The effect of adding a co-solvent (ethanol) was also studied. When supercritical CO 2 doped with 20% (w/w) ethanol was used, it was possible to extract 45g lipids /100g drybiomass of lipids and recover 70% of the pigments. Furthermore, the remaining biomass after extraction was effectively used as feedstock to produce biohydrogen through dark fermentation by Enterobacter aerogenes resulting in a hydrogen production yield of 60.6mL/g drybiomass . © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)128-136
Number of pages114
JournalBioresource Technology
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2013

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Nobre, B. P., Villalobos, F., Barragán, B. E., Oliveira, A. C., Batista, A. P., Marques, P. A. S. S., Mendes, R. L., Sovová, H., Palavra, A. F., & Gouveia, L. (2013). A biorefinery from Nannochloropsis sp. microalga - Extraction of oils and pigments. Production of biohydrogen from the leftover biomass. Bioresource Technology, 128-136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2012.11.084