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Microalgae biorefinery: proposition of a fractionation process

Safi, Carl. Microalgae biorefinery: proposition of a fractionation process. PhD, Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse, 2013

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Official URL: http://ethesis.inp-toulouse.fr/archive/00002493/


A primary algorefinery, concept that deals with the main components of microalgae (lipids, proteins, carbohydrates and pigments), has been studied. A sequence of unit operations has been implemented in order to obtain separated enriched fractions of these biomolecules by conserving their integrity in the downstream process. The study was mainly centred on Chlorella vulgaris, a species known for its rigid cell wall. Most of the lipophilic fraction (lipids and pigments) was recovered using supercritical carbon dioxide with ethanol as a co-solvent, without a preliminary unit operation of cell disruption. The hydrophilic fraction (proteins and polysaccharides) was recovered in the aqueous phase after bed milling as cell disruption method. Subsequently, the aqueous phase was fractionated into three fractions by means of a process of two-stage ultrafiltration. Thus, starches, pigments, proteins and sugars were successfully separated from each other. A life cycle assessment will be necessary to estimate the cost and the sustainability of the fractionation process.

Item Type:PhD Thesis
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - Toulouse INP (FRANCE)
Laboratory name:
Research Director:
Vaca-Garcia, Carlos
Deposited On:24 Apr 2014 21:58

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