Purple bacteria turns sewage into hydrogen energy

November 18, 2018 |

In Spain, researchers at Universidad Rey Juan Carlos found a new method using purple bacteria and electrical currents that reduces carbon emissions from wastewater treatment plants. Purple bacteria are photosynthetic and use infrared light as their energy source, giving them various colors like purple, brown and red. The bacteria can perform metabolic reactions and are usually found in lakes as well as wastewater treatment plants.

ResearchGate interviewed one of the study’s authors, Daniel Puyol, who said that “waste composition plays a key role on the ability of purple bacteria to produce hydrogen. Our preliminary findings indicate that we are able to tune the metabolism of purple phototrophic bacteria to increase carbon dioxide fixation, while maintaining the same hydrogen productivity. This essentially means zero carbon footprint. We have recently obtained funding to design the process and patent the technology. With the technology demonstrated at lab-scale, we will try to convince the water sector about the feasibility of our technology. We have close contact with some water companies that would be interested.”

 

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