Project: Fumaric Acid for Polymer Applicants

The project objective is the development of an efficient fermentative process for the production of fumaric acid from the renewable feedstocks raw glycerol, orange peels and apple pomace. Fumaric acid producing fungi are able to convert numerous carbohydrates as well as glycerol, but studies regarding the mentioned substrates are rather scarce. Hence, a screening of microorganisms able to convert the different substrates most efficiently will be carried out. Two different process variants shall be considered: separate hydrolysis and fermentation (SHF) as well as simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF). In case of SHF, the substrates need to be pretreated and hydrolyzed first. These processes will be optimized for the different substrates and new efficient enzymes shall be developed for this purpose. In case of SSF, hydrolysis will be achieved by the hydrolytic enzymes known to be segregated by Rhizopus spp. The fermentation process itself needs to be optimized for the different substrate/microorganism combinations. More specifically, various parameters, such as the pH value and neutralization strategy, oxygen demand, media composition and fungal morphology need to be optimized to reach a high yield coupled with a high productivity. Additionally, efficient downstream processes will be investigated in combination with the fermentation process to maximize the efficiency of the microbial fumaric acid production. The whole research work will additionally be accompanied by complete Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) studies. LCA will be used to evaluate the process sustainability with realization of the whole production process. In order to evaluate the cost considerations, Life Cycle Cost (LCC) assessment will be used by evaluating the material and energy flows with respect to their unit prices. Project outcomes will aim to reach sustainable product design by multi-objective optimization and cost-benefit analysis tool.

Acronym FAPA
Website visit project website
Network ERA-IB-2
Call ERA-IB 6th Joint Call in Cooperation with EuroTransBio

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
Johann Heinrich von Thünen-Institute, Federal Research Institute for Rural Areas, Forestry and Fisheries - Thünen Institute of Agricultural Technology and Biosystems Engineering Germany
UBE Corporation Europe SA Spain
Biopolis, S.L. Spain
Ekodenge Turkey
ASA Spezialenzyme Germany
Complutense University Madrid Spain