The search for alternative renewable energy has justified studies on hydrogen production. Although the process is considered promising, barriers must be overcome in order to make the production economically feasible, which includes the use of waste as substrate and an increase in process yield. The use of vinasse, that is an effluent produced in large volumes in Brazil, constitutes an opportunity to combine the wastewater treatment to produce renewable energy. The increase in performance can be achieved through the production of H2 in two stages, i.e., production of H2 and organic acids in the fermentative reactor, and the use of these acids in photosynthetic reactor to generate more H2 and also reduce the organic content of the final effluent. The anaerobic fluidized bed reactor (AFBR) with immobilized biomass is an interesting configuration of the reactor to be used in the fermentation process by allowing the retention of biomass in the system, increasing the ratio of cell retention time and hydraulic retention time. Photosynthetic Stirred-Tank (PST) enables suspended and homogeneous growth of microorganisms that use light as energy source to produce hydrogen, so it is viable for the photosynthetic process. This proposal study has as main objective the evaluation of the performance of sequencial system fermentation/photosynthesis for H2 production. For this we propose a sequential system AFBR/PST. In AFBR will occur the fermentation process for production of H2 and organic acids from vinasse. These acids will provide the feed for the PST for the production of more H2 and COD reduction. At the end of the operational phases, samples of the proposed reactors will be analyzed using molecular cloning and sequencing to evaluate the microbial diversity.
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