Deliverable 2.4 - Acidogenic Fermentations and Pretreatments

Deliverable 2.4 reports on the continued activities undertaken by RES URBIS partners in Task 2.1 and follows on from deliverable D2.1.
Task 2.1 is a part of Work Package 2 and deals with upstream acidogenic fermentation and pre-treatments. The task comprises five subtasks led by, USW (The Task leader), UB, UNIVR, UNIRM (together with INRA) and NOVAID. The overarching theme of the substask is concerned with evaluating and improving upstream acidogenic fermentation for the production of VFAs, which are precursors to PHA and biopolymer production, can be or may be sold as a commodity in their own right. Between the partners involved in the task a variety of research avenues are being investigated. These include surveying different feedstock of urban origin such as food waste, waste water sludge, and garden and park wastes. Partners are also evaluating different fermentation parameters for enhancing VFA production from these feedstocks such as varying operating conditions, co-fermentation, the use of saccharifying enzymes, and thermal hydrolysis. Finally, some partners are integrating other technologies such as insitu removal and purification or electro-fermentation. In all cases the research is intended to demonstrate the feasibility of producing VFAs from urban waste streams but also to identify ways of adding efficiency and economic value to the process. In order to reach these diverse goals, researchers have worked at a variety of scales ranging from less than 1 litre bench tests to pilot scale fermenters of hundreds of litres. Progress achieved in each of these sub tasks is detailed in separate sections below. In contrast to deliverable D2.1, where several partners were still developing fermentation capability, all partners are now reporting fermentation results and other data relating to additional process development work they are evaluating. These results have been amalgamated in an appendix document, which accompanies the deliverable and summarizes the fermentation results from each partner. Further work within the task will focus on improving not only fermentation processes but also on improving product quality and purity.