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Priority Programme “Bioelectrochemical and Engineering Fundamentals to Establish Electro-Biotechnology for Biosynthesis – Power to Value-Added Products (eBiotech)” (SPP 2240)

Mittwoch 14. Juni 2023

Deadline: 14. Juni 2023

Electro-biotechnology for biosynthesis is an emerging field at the interface of electrochemistry and biotechnology. Instead of using carbohydrates as an energy source for biosynthesis as in classic biotechnology, electro-biotechnology aims to primarily use regenerative electricity to drive biosynthesis and has the potential to overcome inherent limitations of present bioproduction systems in terms of atom efficiency and product yield. It is especially useful in using low energy-containing wastes or effluents like CO2, providing an ideal solution for power-to-product approaches and the circular economy. It therefore has an immense potential to transform biotechnology for better addressing global challenges, i. e. an increasing world population (food shortage), rise in CO2 emission and depletion of fossil raw materials. Internationally, electro-biotechnology for biosynthesis is in its infancy, and fundamental research in both natural sciences and engineering as well as an interdisciplinary approach are desperately needed to realise its promise.

This Priority Programme focuses on the fundamentals of electro-biotechnology. Specifically, scientific questions from basic electron transfer mechanisms in bio-electrochemical systems (BES) to fundamental reactor and microorganism design should be studied quantitatively and systematically. For these purposes, new and more reliable methods and tools are to be developed for quantitative analysis, basic process characterisation and benchmarking, modeling, and system-level understanding of BES. Based on mechanistic and system-level understanding, design principles should be worked out to develop suitable electrodes and bioreactors and to establish new extracellular electron transfer pathways and electroactive biocatalysts (enzymes and microorganisms) for efficient biosynthesis.

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Illustration: Kalenderblatt mit Einträgen zur Forschungsförderung