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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 921291, 10 pages
Research Article

Simultaneous Coproduction of Hydrogen and Ethanol in Anaerobic Packed-Bed Reactors

Department of Chemical Engineering, Federal University of São Carlos, Washington Luis Road, km 235, 13565-905 São Carlos, SP, Brazil

Received 6 June 2014; Revised 11 August 2014; Accepted 23 August 2014; Published 11 September 2014

Academic Editor: Ilona Sárvári Horváth

Copyright © 2014 Cristiane Marques dos Reis and Edson Luiz Silva. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study evaluated the use of an anaerobic packed-bed reactor for hydrogen production at different hydraulic retention times (HRT) (1–8 h). Two reactors filled with expanded clay and fed with glucose (3136–3875 mg L−1) were operated at different total upflow velocities: 0.30 cm s−1 (R030) and 0.60 cm s−1 (R060). The effluent pH of the reactors was maintained between 4 and 5 by adding NaHCO3 and HCl solutions. It was observed a maximum hydrogen production rate of 0.92 L H2 h−1 L−1 in R030 at HRT of 1 h. Furthermore, the highest hydrogen yield of 2.39 mol H2 mol−1 glucose was obtained in R060. No clear trend was observed by doubling the upflow velocities at this experiment. High ethanol production was also observed, indicating that the ethanol-pathway prevailed throughout the experiment.