Macroalgae (Ulva reticulata) derived biohydrogen recovery through mild surfactant induced energy and cost efficient dispersion pretreatment technology

Arulazhagan Pugazhendi, Mamdoh T. Jamal, Bandar A. Al-Mur, Rajesh Banu Jeyakumar, Gopalakrishnan Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Currently identification of alternate fuel is the key area of research under progress to overcome the depletion of fossil fuels, meet the domestic and industrial requirements. Generation of hydrogen, which is a clean fuel gas can solve various environmental related problems. Extensive research is being carried out to increase production of hydrogen through different substrates. This study aims to increase the production of hydrogen from Ulva reticulata (a macroalgal biomass). Initially, the biomass is pretreated mechanically with disperser and a biosurfactant, namely rhamnolipid in order to increase the solubilization of the biomass. The rate of COD liquefaction increased from 14% to 25% with the addition of biosurfactant to the macroalgal biomass, which is further treated mechanically using a disperser. The disperser rotor speed of 12,000 rpm and the specific energy input of 1175 kJ/kg TS (Total Solids) with the disintegration time of 30 min and biosurfactant dosage of 0.075 g/g TS were considered as the optimum parameters for the effective liquefaction of the macroalgal biomass. Approximately 3500 mg/L of the biopolymers were released after the combinative pretreatment (using disperser and biosurfactant). About 80 mL biohydrogen/g COD (Chemical Oxygen Demand) was generated when the biomass was pretreated with both the disperser and biosurfactant while the biomass pretreated with the disperser alone generated just 30 mL biohydrogen/g COD and the untreated biomass generated 5 mL biohydrogen/g COD. Thus, it can be concluded that Ulva reticulata can be utilized effectively to generate biohydrogen.

Original languageEnglish
Article number132463
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Feb

Bibliographical note

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© 2021 Elsevier Ltd

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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