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Journal Articles Processes Year : 2022

Modelling and optimal control of an electro-fermentation process within a batch culture

Abstract

The electro-fermentation is a novel process that consists in coupling a microbial fermentative metabolism with an electrochemical system. In such a process the electrodes act either as electron sinks or sources modifying the fermentation balance of a microbial fermentative metabolism and provide new options for the control of microbial activity. A theoretical framework for the analysis and control of fermentations using electro-fermentation is currently lacking. In this paper, we propose a simple electro-fermentation model in which a population of fermentative bacteria switch between two metabolic behaviors in response to different electrode potentials. We then mathematically analyze optimal strategies to maximize the production of one of the rising products in a batch fermentation using Pontryagin's Maximum Principle. The obtained results show that, in some experimental configurations, a dynamic control of the electrode potential is required for the maximization of the desired product. Consequences of the obtained optimal strategy for driving electro-fermentation experiments are discussed through a realistic example. This analysis also highlights that the transition rates between fermentation and electro-fermentation behaviors are currently unknown and would be crucial to quantify in order to apply such a control approach.
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hal-03593854 , version 1 (02-03-2022)

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Ihab I. Haidar, Elie Desmond-Le Quéméner, Jean-Pierre Barbot, Jérôme Harmand, Alain Rapaport. Modelling and optimal control of an electro-fermentation process within a batch culture. Processes, 2022, 10 (3), ⟨10.3390/pr10030535⟩. ⟨hal-03593854⟩
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