Simulation of enzymatic depolymerization

Many fundamental processes and process steps in life science consist of a combination of solid dissolution and the degradation of large molecules.
Enzymatic-cleavage processes are very important in the food and forage industries. Many processes in particular solutions (flour/malt/powder in water) are similar to each other and are based on enzyme activity and coupled mass-transport reaction-process cascades.

Polymer hydrolysis extends to the mashing process and, for example, synthesis of biogas or bioethanol. The distribution of chain length of the polymers and its development over time is quite important for understanding of the system behaviour. Only model-based analyses of such highly interdependent process cascades will provide the necessary understanding.

Our aim is to develop tools that enable the simulation of the degradation of polysaccharides. To describe the time depending distribution of chain length we will use population-balance models.

In a recent project funded by the German Minstry of Economics and Energy (via Aif) and the FEI (Forschungskreis der Ernährungsindustrie e.V., bonn) Project AiF 16542 N we investigated the degradation of starch during the mashing process. The project was a cooperation between our chair, the Chair of Brewing and Beverage Technology and the Process Engineering of Disperse Systems group. A short summary is available here: Simulation of the mashing process -- Model based assistance for progress, monitoring and control of the depolymerisation of natural polymers using the example of the mashing process and the long German version of the report will be sent on request.

For more information please contact:

Research funded by:

Dr.-Ing. Christoph Kirse
Lehrstuhl für Systemverfahrenstechnik
Gregor-Mendel-Straße 4
85354 Freising
Phone: +49 (08161) 71-3788
Fax: +49 (8161) 71-4510

Industrielle Gemeinschaftsforschung (IGF)