Bioengineering

Specific mission

Evaluation of pretreatment processes for heterogeneous organic wastes; modeling of bioreactor performances for scale-up purposes; energy sustainability analysis of plants and processes.
Isolation and culture of microorganisms from environmental and food matrices; development of tests for the evaluation of antimicrobial properties of materials; fermentation processes for the production of biomasses, biomacromolecules and building blocks; set-up of biodegradation processes in microcosm.

Main research topics

  1. Development of advanced anaerobic bioreactors with addition of different metal particles and conductive oxides for the enhancement of in-situ hydrogen and methane yields.
  2. Evaluation of the energy sustainability by means of dedicated indicators, such as the ESI (Energy Sustainability Index), EROI (Energy Return on Investment) and EPT (Energy Payback Time).
  3. Fermentation processes for PHA production from lignocellulosic wastes.
  4. Valorization processes for agro-food industry wastes and by-products (protein and nucleic acid extraction and purification).
  5. Microcosm biodegradation of hydrocarbons and polymeric materials.
  6. “Mycoremediation” of cadmium contaminated soils.
  7. Evaluation and control of the biodeterioration on flooded paper material.
  8. Monitoring and control of microbial contamination in libraries and archives.
  9. Antimicrobial tests applied to materials of different origin (inorganics and polymers).
  10. Microbial entrapment in hydrogels for the development of biosensors.
  11. Experimental simulation of multistep fermentation processes under different retention times.
  12. Modelling of complex biochemical processes by means of soft computing techniques as neural networks and fuzzy mathematics.

Main partnerships

  • CIRIAF Centro di Ricerca Interuniversitario sull’Inquinamento e sull’Ambiente (Perugia)
  • IMAMOTER – CNR Istituto per le Macchine Agricole e Movimento Terra
  • CREA – IT Consiglio per la ricerca in agricoltura e l'analisi dell'economia agraria-Centro di ricerca Ingegneria e Trasformazioni agroalimentari
  • UPO – DISIT Dipartimento di Scienze e Innovazione Tecnologica
  • UNITO – Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita e Biologia dei Sistemi
  • BRAF - Bioraffinerie alimentate con biomasse residuali
  • UNITO – Dipartimento di Chimica
  • POLITO-PREP Servizio Prevenzione e Protezione
  • POLITO – DISAT gruppo GLANCE, gruppo POLYMAT, gruppo MUSICHEN, gruppo SMAC
  • POLITO – DIATI Area Geofisica Applicata
  • NEERI - National Environmental Engineering Research Institute of the Indian Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) – Water Technology and Management Division

Projects and publications

Reference laboratories