Sustainable and cost effective biochemical/biofuel production is a key factor for the reduction of anthropogenic climate change as well as for the future development of a bio based economy. The carboxylate platform is a biotechnological approach which contributes to the paradigm shift from de polluting waste streams to recovering value and energy.
During anaerobic digestion, organic matter is biologically transformed into short chain carboxylates (SCC, 1-5 carbons). By a process called chain elongation, these SCC can be further transformed into medium chain carboxylates (MCC) such as caproate (6 carbons) and caprylate (8 carbons) which after separation can be electrochemically upgraded to produce fuels and chemicals.
This research aims to determine steering conditions and the effect of reducing agents on MCC formation. Organic waste materials will be used identifying key microorganisms performing the conversions.