Hydrogen energyProject Biological Hydrogen Production
This is the final Lessons Learnt Report from Macquarie University, providing insights into the scope and outcomes of the Project.
This project aimed to use modern synthetic biology methods to produce a strain of bacteria that produces hydrogen from renewable carbohydrate feedstock such as glucose and sucrose. We aimed to achieve this through an iterative process of engineering in which bacterial cells are optimised for the maximum rate and yield of hydrogen suitable for commercial scale hydrogen production.
To achieve these aims we proposed to:
- Scale up the fermentation production of engineered strain from 2 mL to a 2 L scale to identify the engineering and safety requirements for the safe and efficient production and collection of hydrogen gas using bacterial cultures.
- Optimise the yields of hydrogen from carbohydrate from 2% to 20% by engineering of bacterial strains using synthetic biology methods.
- Optimise the functional expression of the components of the hydrogenase enzyme system and ancillary proteins within the bacteria to maximise the rates of hydrogen production from carbohydrates.
- Produce and collect sufficient amounts of hydrogen (nominally 100g) for testing of purity, and for testing as a fuel in hydrogen fuel cell applications.