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BIOmass Valorization by MICRObes for BIOEnergy Production

Publié le 27 novembre 2015

​​​The proposed project represents an exceptional opportunity to establish a new axe of research with international influence on the theme of bioenergies in Aix-Marseille area.



Coordinateur: MT Giudici-Orticoni
In the wake of the decrease in fossil fuel reserves and rising concerns about the global warming, scientists, governments and industrial actors are urged to act for the development of alternative energy sources and new feedstock for chemistry. Several directives in France and Europe have set ambitious goals with regard to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, production of renewable energies and waste recycling. However the technologies that will allow meeting these objectives are not yet mature. In the past decades, biotechnology has revolutionized health- and agro-industries. The next challenge of biotechnology will be to enable the replacement of fossil resources by the production of high-energy compounds (biofuel) from biomass through sustainable and environment friendly processes. The first implementation of biofuels, i.e., the first generation (1G) biofuels, is produced from food crops such as sugar cane and rapeseed. However, the use of agricultural crops for biofuel production diverts food away from the food chain, leading to food shortages and price rises, thereby making 1G biofuels unsustainable. Novel concepts – such as conversion of oil stored in microalgae into biodiesel and the large-scale production of biohydrogen - are very promising but still are relatively far from commercialisation. 

The goal of the present project is to :
  • provide better biocatalyst for biomass formation (including CO2 reduction) and degradation 
  • build an integrated vision of microorganisms involved in bioenergy production to provide more predictive, generic and translatable knowledge; 
  • improve our understanding on an integrated vision of consortia involved in bioenergy production, 
  • develop controlled bioreactor, 
  • develop of biofuel cells to produce electricity from biogas or waste and 
  • investigate the societal an economic aspects of BioH2 use. 

The association of 100 researchers and engineers from 13 different labs of the Aix-Marseille University, with strong expertise in microbiology, metabolism, lipidomics, bioinformatics, biophysics, bioprocess, chemical engineering, economy, will allow the emergence of an internationally recognized task force aimed at remove biological constraints currently limiting the development of advanced biofuels and propose innovative. ​