Jade Bioenergy Quality Control considerations
Our process consists of four general stages throughout the production of ethanol from photosynthetic microorganisms (Figure 1). The first stage, denoted Photosynthesis stage, is the time during ethanol production where our photosynthetic microbes will synthesize the necessary fermentable starches to produceethanol. The second stage consists of ethanol production in a closed bioreactor system. The third stage consists of ethanol recovery, and the final stage consists of ethanol storage. Quality control considerations will be implemented at each of these stages to guarantee ethanol of the highest purity for export.
Figure 1. General overview of our Photosynthesis-Based Fuel Process. Sunlight andthe requisite carbon source for photosynthesis of starch will be provided by natural sunlight and carbon dioxide byproducts from other power generating companies. Resulting microbes will be transferred to a closed bioreactor system where batch fermentation will occur. Extracellular ethanol will be separated from cellular debris via Tangential Flow Filtration (TFF), where ethanol will berecovered and distilled, and finally stored.
As detailed in our previous standard operating procedures and good laboratory practices report, quality control considerations in our process will focus on optimization of photosynthesis and fermentation reactions, and purification and concentration of ethanol. To increase the efficiency of production and product purity, we will concentrate on optimizingproduction parameters and verifying contamination events periodically. The parameters to be tested, along with the microbiological contamination assays are detailed in Table 1.
Table 1. Quality control parameters and assays in Jade Bioenergy ethanol production.
Process Stage | Assay | Description | Expected Outcome |
Photosynthesis | 1. Visual evidence 2. Fraction of cells in activestate 3. Light intensity 4. Enzyme-Linked Immuno-Sorbent Assay (ELISA) 5. Solid media culture | 1. Qualitative determination of other photosynthetic microbes that produce light-absorbing molecules other than carotenoids, turbidity, and via staining microscopy. 2. Using the fraction of cells in the active state, as opposed to resting and inhibited states, we may determine and optimizethe photosynthetic rate (Luo and Al Dahan, 2004). 3. Determination and automatic variation of light intensity. 4. Used to determine affinity with proteins of interest (evidence of contamination). 5. Culture will be streaked on nutrient rich solid agar media to determine growth. | 1. Most basic evidence of contamination event. Turbidity could be due to yeast or bacteria growing in themedium, other light-absorbing molecules due to photosynthetic microbes growing on the minimal media, or basic microscopy could yield quick evidence of potential problems. 2. Experiments will yield parameter optimization information, so as to determine critical values of yield. Any below these critical parameters will result in modification of starch production. 3. Using a system of lamps whichvary light intensity according to internal sensors linked to calculated photosynthetic and growth rates in step 1, as detailed by Meireles et al., light intensity will automatically vary to optimize production. 4. The substrates of interest for the detection of contamination events via ELISA will be for fecal matter, lipopolysaccharides, teichoic acids, and yeast spores (Schmecel, et al., 2003).5. Basic verification assay to determine growth of cultivable bacteria. Evidence could take hours to days. |
Fermentation | 1. Visual evidence 2. Markov algorithm 3. Enzyme-Linked Immuno-Sorbent Assay (ELISA) 4. Solid media culture | 1. Qualitative determination of other photosynthetic microbes that produce light-absorbing molecules other than carotenoids, turbidity, and via...