Project Profile

Project Title Biohydrogen production from second generation feedstock
Project Code 2014MB05
Project Status Ongoing
Start Date November 2014
Sponsor(s) Department of Biotechnology
Division Environmental and Industrial Biotechnology

Compared to other biofuels, bio-hydrogen holds the most attractive future energy carrier due to its high energy density, low energy input and higher conversion efficiency to usable power including its non-polluting nature. Among different biological processes fermentative bio-hydrogen production by dark anaerobes through dark fermentation route, offer a promising route of hydrogen production as this process produces hydrogen at a faster rate without any requirement of light energy source. In the recent past, several investigations are focused on optimization of parameters for dark fermentative hydrogen production with a goal to enhance hydrogen production rate and yield efficiency, and to make the process cost effective. These studies are mainly based on the use of pure carbohydrates, the first generation feed stocks. Since first generation feed stocks are based on food crops, it is imperative to explore for nonfood competitive food crops to use as substrate for bio-hydrogen production. In this concern, lignocellulosic biomass with low commercial value holds importance to use as second generation feed stock, as they are abundantly available.

This project deals with exploration for development of a pilot scale process for dark fermentative biohydrogen production from lignocellulosic biomass based sugars (a second generation feedstock) by employing Enterobacter cloacae, isolated by TERI.