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Treatment of enzyme-initiated delignification reaction mixtures with ceramic ultrafiltration membranes: Experimental investigations and modeling approach

: Busse, N.; Fuchs, F.; Kraume, M.; Czermak, P.


Separation science and technology 51 (2016), Nr.9, S.1546-1565
ISSN: 0149-6395
Fraunhofer IME ()

Membrane reactors offer a promising configuration for enzymatic delignification processes (lignin modification, removal and utilization). However, membrane fouling reduces the efficiency of filtration and of the entire bioprocess. The flux and retention characteristics of protein-ligninsulfonate model mixtures were investigated. A 5-kDa tubular ceramic membrane achieved a sufficient and constant ligninsulphonate retention of 80â90%. The retention of phenolic monomers (e.g. guaiacol) increased with the ligninsulphonate concentration. Mass transfer-controlled regions were observed in which permeate fluxes could be predicted by the limiting flux model. Finally, the underlying fouling mechanisms were evaluated, revealing a predominance of complete pore blocking and cake filtration.