Monday, April 30, 2007

Biodiesel fuel production in a magneto-fluidized bed bioreactor using cell catalyst

Ming Ying and Guanyi Chen. Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tianjin University, Weijin Road 92, Tianjin, 300072, China

Magnetofluidized beds (MFBs) were broadly used for reaction, filtration and separation in gas-solid, liquid solid and three-phase systems, because of facilitating control and elimination of the circulation and bubble formation in the beds. In this paper, the fundamental theory of MFB was illustrated firstly, and its recent practical developments in biotechnology were analyzed in detail. The results indicate that there are very few paramagnetic resonance catalyst in chemical industry, which resulted in halting MFB study since 1990s. The magnetic cell catalyst for biodiesel has been already reported in our previous paper showing some promising results, and the scheme of the process is proposed here.  In this study, three magnetically fluidized beds were applied in series for biodiesel production by magnetic cell-catalyzed process at normal temperature and atmospheric pressure. Heat and mass transfer, rheological behavior of MFB and effect of applied field intensity of the MFB were investigated, and the relationship between conversion and superficial gas velocity, distribution of field intensity and magnetic cell catalyst size were obtained under stabilized-bed operating conditions. MFB is considered possibly more suitable as a bioreactor for biocatalysis system because microbial cells are easily magnetized