Middough Visit March 22
- Group presented to John Micheli
-Filters should have magnets
-CIP is a daily process, but with evidence of good cleanliness can make it once a week, we will use 1/week
-Will operate 24 hrs, with only a 2-3 workers to monitor fermenters
-Want flow into dryer to have lowest possible water content
-Vacuum pumps-steam boosters with 3-4 stages
-SBO storage tanks have nitrogen blanket of 0.5 psig is sufficient
-Use a homogenizer as the HPP
-Pump out of the votator is for back pressure regulator
-CIP filter should be an inline strainer
-CIP alkaline and acid tanks are probably industrial 55 gal poly bottles with installed flow meters
-Must have code, date for each box and tub
-Have workers packing boxes with tubs
-Pastuerization is a piping run of 30 minutes at the constant temperature



Meeting Notes - 3/11/2009 - by Charu

Presentation Feedback:
  • Strong Points: Well organized PowerPoint, maintained standard time, Handouts ( Mass balance), Q&A
  • Improvements: Units consistency, Give a summary before and after the presentation and mention future works

List of things we need to work on:
  1. Have drawing standards, Assign numbers for streams used in each process and use same format for spreadsheets.
  2. Work on Instrumentation of PFD, using Icarus.
  3. Work on Process description: Including Equipment list and details, Chemistry Section, Products section
  4. Break down the cost estimate, have estimate cost for the building, using Icarus.
  5. We should avoid using centrifuges just to keep our capital cost down.
  6. Land cost for our project is similar to cost of produce the amount of glucose we need.
  7. Dan will be sending the contact information to find more about the dryers.
  8. For the CO2 lysing we only need 2 feet diameter column, as a continuous process


Meeting Notes - 3/4/2010 - by Travis

The following topics were discussed during a conference call:

  • Enzymes can be stored in a kegerator at the required temperature, just label it on the PFD and designate the temperature on the mass balance sheet
  • Heat exchanger should assume a overall heat transfer coefficient for all heat exchangers and go from there
  • Cooling water inlet at 85 F and out at a maximum of 120 F
  • Determine the duty required for heaters, boilers, cooler, ammonia system. Allow Aspen to determine sizing and pricing required
  • Discussed putting things into Aspen to determine the pricing
  • Discussed the washing process of SBO
  • For the presentation, have handouts for the mass balance and any other specifics associated
  • For the presentation order, have overall block flow, pfds, and whatever else
  • Will be sending chemical list pricing to Dan by Friday
  • Will send presentation via email to Dan 24 hours prior to Tuesday




Meeting Notes - 2/26/2010 - by Ramune

The following topics were discussed during the phone conference:

  • The C02 for our fermentation will come from ethanol refinery
  • The prices of commodity chemicals can be found in the library sources
  • Look at the different extractors
  • GEA separators
  • Disk centrifuge
  • Agitation and heat transfer from biochemical engineering books
  • Need to make overall Block Flow Diagram including hexane
  • Need mass balance kg/batch
  • Every 24h equipment must be cleaned - five step process CIP
  • Fermentation vessel is sterilized
  • Energy balance on glucose going in
  • Respiration rate
  • The design of the dissolved air unit can be found in engineering book
  • Use ASPEN to generate prices of equipment
  • Peristaltic pump for SOB process




Meeting Notes -2/23/2010 -By Ramune


Our mentor Dan came to meet with us at CEB. The following topics were discussed:
  • Communication between group members must be improved - Dan suggested working together and exploring all ideas
  • Color code was used on our block flow diagram; red - add certain things, green - take the stuff out
  • Always have the back-up slides for the equipment or process that was not chosen by us, but it is alternative to our process or equipment
  • Do not take prices from the catalog (reagent grade for laboratory purposes)
  • Chemical properties of sodium methoxide
  • Bottoms that are used for the fermentation is not yeast
  • In order to find the price of certain equipment or component we can look at the alternative and estimate the price
  • Vitamin D comes from shrimp
  • For the incoming air use the absolute filter (about 400hp motor)
  • Need to have drop tanks and storing capacity for our raw materials (1.5 times the size of the truck)
  • Our process is combination of batch and continuous
  • Use enzyme to brake slime after CO2 lysing
  • Use hexane after centrifuge
  • Dry the biomass in direct dryer
  • Cascaded CSTRs are like PFR and can be replaced by batch reactor
  • Refrigeration unit will come with margarine equipment


Meeting Notes – 2/18/2010 -By Charu

  1. Presentation was missing the overall mass balance
  2. BFD needs to improved ( It should serve as a road map of the process) and needs specific streams name
  3. PFD needs to be developed from BFD
  4. We need to use consistent units ( lbs/hr is preferred)
  5. Cost Estimate on main equipments
  6. Utilities and waste products ( all inputs and outputs) should be in diagram
  7. For recovery process use the minimum antifoam
  8. analyze gas absorption, mix system, dissolve oxygen, power number and agitator
  9. How and why are we starving algae? By limiting amount of Nitrogen and to let algae produce oil.
  10. Make a page on Wikispaces for all the assumptions made in the process.
  11. Hexane Extraction method was discussed taking account for carotene present in the oil
  12. Eric will be talking to John for the IPE program
  13. Talked about, how nickel rainy works.
  14. Hardening Ratio for the Margin is 20:80
  15. We need refrigerated room for margin
  16. Look into Pesticide control, Clean up system, Sanitary design and EPA system

Phone conference 2/11/2010 - By Ramune

All group members were participating in the phone conference. The following topics were discussed during our conference call with mentor Dan:
  • Making margarine in our facility and shipping it off
  • We looking to take 1% of butter/margarine market and base the rest of the process on this number
  • Use available recipe for margarine
  • Show how margarine plant opperates
  • Need to make contact with Cargill
  • The fermentation vessel size is standard
  • Scale-up gradually from lab to production vessel
  • We will be using glucose for fermentation (buying from Cargill, need to figure out the pricing)
  • Lysing with CO2 and remaining biomass will be treated with hexane
  • We will base our marketing on the trends of “Whole Foods”
  • Need to make detailed block flow diagram
  • Calculations in excel spreadsheets



Phone Call 3 Notes - by Charu

1. Each group member talked about whatever they found through their research.
2. We decided to run the batch process as compare to continuous process
3. Economy Calculations – Travis needs to look for how the market for spread butter will grow? Then do the rough calculations on net present value. We also need to take in consideration that 5-10% of our process will be spoiled. Yield will be affected.
4. We will have to buy 0 trans fatty acid of certain melting point to mix with our product (lipid) to make the spread. That can be purchased from Cargill or AVM , etc.
5. Do we need to refine the crude oil? No, because it doesn’t contain any harmful material when compared with FDA standards. There is no strong smell in the lipid, so little favoring should work for deodorization
6. Bio-reactor- How the heat will be removed from? Cooling jacket? Coils inside or out the reactor? Because increasing the surface is not the only way.
7. Yeast Extract- How yeast will be used in the process?
8. Extraction Processes where discussed. Volume will be reduced in order to operate the lysing process. We want to produce the lipids in liquid form after all the processes.
9. Two Different separation methods were mentioned single-stage separation and Countercurrent separation.
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Phone Call 2 Notes - by Dan

Team Alpha: Re On Stream factor, Yields, Pricing.

You have determined how much you want to sell. Now you have determine how many batches you need to produce.

The only commercial fermentation process is ethanol. It has many biological pressures to keep it from being contaminated. Yet only one technology provider, Volgebusch, guarantees their process. Many process that started off as continuous have switched back to batch. If a batch goes bad you have the other fermentors to continue manufacturing.

No plant operates 100% of the time.The best chemical plants operate 85% 0f the time or 7500 hr/year. Federal holidays, plant utilities shut downs, no feed stock, unschedule break downs, waiting for analytic results, batches gone bad, off spec material, acts of god etc.

Besides the actual operating time you have to allow time for discharge, cleaning, charging, sterilizing, induction time etc.

No reactions are 100% complete nor are recoveries 100% complete. There are losses at every step. Including wash out losses when cleaning equipment. Even when shipping finished product to customers. They all effect the overall yield from raw materials to sold goods. As mentioned above some batches go bad and have to be wasted. Not only loss of reactor time but also loss of raw materials.

The selling price in the is not the price that you sell it for as it leaves the plant. Retailers typically buy goods at 50% of what they sell it for. The wholesaler that you sell it to also has to make money to cover his warehousing and distribution cost. So your selling price may only be 35% of what the supermarket sells it for. Confirm the number for table spreads.

A good deal of chemical engineering is business!
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Phone Call 1 notes - By Charu
• Decided as a group to go with functional food
• Discussed about the economy and market of the product
• Everyone discussed about what they are working on.
• Tried to come up with site location ( FL, CA ?)
• Specified the type of Bioreactor we will be using ( Clear tubes)
• Discussed if product is in or outside the cell.
• Got the reference for oilgae
• Referred to look more into:
Membrane Filtration, Reusing the water, Gross separation, concentrating the solution, Acrylic Chemicals, Cross flow Membrane
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First Meeting Thursday Jan 21 Notes - By Charu
• Start wikispace and set communication matrix of group members
• Whenever emailing Dan, make sure to email at both email ids written on the business card
• Importance of Fatty acids  DHA , Omega 3 acid
• Main Source of Fish Oil  Algae
• Selling Target  $3-4/gallon
• Open pond vs. closed pond  Depends on water sources, yield, carbon dioxide utilization, sulfur dioxide extraction if used from power plant, contamination
• Nutraceutical  we can make functional food, use the nutrients available along with color of alage.
• Yellow color Pro Vitamin A, using double bond absorption makes it saturated and color goes away.
• DHA  Properties , 6 Double Bonds
• Other fatty acids  zero trans fatty acid
• Resources  Bailey’s Books
• Goal  Make a flow diagram and discuss the challenges and uncertainity
• How Lipids are transported? High molecular weight compounds aren’t absorbed by the body
• Sanitation  Big issue in Designing Nutraceutical products
• Product  Making Butter, supplements or just crystallize the fatty acids and sell them to food industries
• Bioreactors  requires enrich source of CO2
• Target, Market, Money  2 acres?
• Process of growing algae  Use sunlight or feed glucose in dark?
• Recylcing  very important
• Economy 
• Make the Block diagram of the project
• Harvesting  microfilteration , centrifugation
• Hardening & interesterfication process
• Bulk or fractional extraction?
• To lower the price of butter spread, we can use soybeans to go trans fatty acids
• Can DHA and carotenes be removed?
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