Pune: Biodiesel manufacturing is picking up globally, resulting in a byproduct called glycerol. Indian scientists have now developed a technique to break down glycerol into commercially useful products using bacterial strains.
Scientists have identified two bacterial strains which can use crude glycerol as carbon as well as energy source for production of commercially valuable compounds – 2,3- butanediol (BDO), 1,3- Propanediol (PDO) – along with acetoin and ethanol.
The process has been developed by a team of scientists at Chemical Engineering and Process Development Division jointly with National Collection of Industrial Microorganisms Center, National Chemical Laboratory, Pune. Researchers used a mixed bacterial culture to ferment crude bio-glycerol under aerobic conditions. The bacterial strains used were Enterobacter aerogenes NCIM 2695 and Klebsialla pneumoniae NCIM 5215. These strains when used together can lead to 100% transformation of crude glycerol.