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The optimization of operating conditions for cellulose hydrolysis was systemically undertaken using an ultra-scaled down membrane bioreactor based on the parameter scanning ultrafiltration apparatus. The bioconversion of cellulose saccharification was carried out with freely suspended cellulase from Aspergillus niger as the biocatalyst. The polyethersulfone ultrafiltration membranes with a molecular weight cutoff of 10 kDa were used to construct the enzymatic membrane bioreactor, with the membrane showing a complete retaining of cellulase and cellobiase. The influence of solution pH, temperature, salt (NaCl) concentration, presence of cellobiase, cellulose-to-enzyme ratio and stirring speed on reducing sugar production was examined. The results showed that the addition of an appropriate amount of NaCl or cellobiase had a positive effect on reducing sugar formation. Under the identified optimal conditions, cellulose hydrolysis in the enzymatic membrane bioreactor was tested for a long period of time up to 75 h, and both enzymes and operation conditions demonstrated good stability. Also, the activation energy (E a) of the enzymatic hydrolysis, with a value of 34.11 ± 1.03 kJ mol-1, was estimated in this study. The operational and physicochemical conditions identified can help guide the design and operation of enzymatic membrane bioreactors at the industrial scale for cellulose hydrolysis. © 2010 Springer-Verlag.

Original publication




Journal article


Bioprocess and Biosystems Engineering

Publication Date





525 - 532