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Hydrogen Production by Anaerobic Microbial Communities Exposed to Repeated Heat Treatments

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Biological hydrogen production by anaerobic mixed communities was studied in laboratory-scale bioreactors using sucrose as the substrate. A bioreactor in which a fraction of the return sludge was exposed to repeated heat treatments performed better than a control bioreactor without repeated heat treatment of return sludge and produced a yield of 2.15 moles of hydrogen per mole of sucrose, with 50% hydrogen in the biogas. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis showed that two different Clostridium groups (comprised of one or more species) were dominant during hydrogen production. The relative abundance of two other non-Clostridium groups increased during periods of decreased hydrogen production. The first group consisted of Bifidobacterium thermophilum, and the second group included one or more of Bacillus, Melissococcus, Spirochaeta, and Spiroplasma spp.

Keywords: Clostridium; heat treatment; hydrogen production; terminal-restriction fragment-length polymorphism

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2007

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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