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Youngsukkasem, S., Rakshit, S. K., and Taherzadeh, M. J. (2012). "Biogas production by encapsulated methane-producing bacteria," BioRes. 7(1), 56-65.

Abstract

Encapsulation of methane-producing bacteria was carried out with the objective of enhancing the rate of biogas production. Encapsulation with a one-step liquid-droplet-forming technique was employed for the natural membrane, resulting in spherical capsules with an average diameter and a membrane thickness of 4.3 and 0.2 mm, respectively. The capsules were made from alginate, using chitosan or Ca2+ as counter-ions, together with the addition of carboxymethylcellulose (CMC). A Durapore® membrane (hydrophilic PVDF) with a pore size of 0.1 µm was used for synthetic encapsulating sachets having width and length dimensions 3×3 and 3×6 cm2 for holding the bacteria. During the digesting process, the dissolved substrates penetrated through the capsule membrane, and biogas inside the capsules was able to escape by diffusion. The results indicate encapsulation to be a promising method of digestion, with a high density of anaerobic bacteria. The method holds considerable potential for further development of membranes and their applications.
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