Construction of the technology platform
The targeted process chain was demonstrated on a laboratory scale. During the last year of this rewarding project, the modules of the CELBICON plant are built and will be integrated into a single demonstration plant.
CO2 will be sourced from air, using a CO2 adsorber provided by the project partner Climeworks, a pioneer of direct air capture technology. The first conversion step involves electrochemical reduction of CO2 to C1 intermediates on the cathode, while wastewater treatment was chosen for the valorization of the anodic current. The C1 intermediates will be converted into higher-value chemicals such as lactic acid, isoprene and long-chain terpenes in an integrated fermentation process. In this way, the microorganisms used are optimized by tailor-made metabolic engineering aimed at efficient formation of the product and to support process performance.
Upon commissioning the demonstrator plant, process validation and optimization will be completed at the end of the project.
 UNEP. (2017) The emissions gap report 2017. United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Nairobi.