Illustration by Helena Junicke


Green chemical production using ecological control strategies


The overall goal of this project is to gain a deeper understanding of the fundamental principles that govern green chemical production using mixed microbial communities.


Today’s chemical production and energy supply are marked by a strong dependence on fossil raw materials. Bio-based production systems offer a solution, yet the predominant use of microbial pure culture processes in state-of-the-art production platforms limits the environmental and economic benefits. These systems require higher-value, pure substrates (e.g. glucose for biofuel production) which raises concerns about sustainable land use and competition with food production. This means, energy and resource recovery must become central themes in second-generation biotechnological production processes. GREENLOGIC bridges the sustainability gap by exploring mixed microbial culture (MMC) biotechnology with a view to producing energy-rich biofuels and green chemicals from low-value substrates and waste streams. As a representative for such process, biobutanol production in MMCs is a focus area of the project. Biobutanol is a promising biofuel with ideal properties to replace petrol-based transport fuels at large scale. With 50% higher energy density it is superior to bioethanol, which is used as fuel additive nowadays.


To address above challenges, GREENLOGIC aims

  1. to develop a generalized model platform for green chemical production by extending the generalized Anaerobic Digestion Model No. 1 (ADM1) with non-gaseous biofuels and energy rich chemicals.
  2. to pioneer ecological control strategies for green chemicals production, particularly biobutanol, to enrich yet unknown microbial species with unique metabolic properties.
  3. to develop a set of novel (soft)sensors for on-line monitoring of green chemicals production processes.

The project is carried out in close collaboration between the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), Lund University (LU) in Sweden, Delft University of Technology (TUD) in the Netherlands, Technical University Berlin (TUB) in Germany, University of Queensland (UQ) in Australia, and Novozymes (NOV) as industrial end user.


Krist V. Gernaey
DTU Kemiteknik
45 25 29 70


Xavier Flores Alsina
DTU Kemiteknik
45 25 29 67


Helena Junicke
DTU Kemiteknik