Microalgae are potential sustainable renewable sources of energy but are highly underutilized due to the expensive and time-consuming downstream processing. This study aims at curbing these obstacles by extracting multiple components with a single processing unit. In this work, an ultrasound-assisted liquid triphasic flotation system was incorporated to extract proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates by phase separation. The parameters involved were optimized and the final recovery efficiency of proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates was determined. A control run involving conventional three-phase partitioning and a 15-fold scale-up system with the recycling of phase components were also performed. Gas Chromatograph and Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy were used to examine the potential of extracted products as a source of biofuel. This biorefinery approach is crucial in commercializing microalgae for biodiesel and bioethanol generation with a side product of purified proteins as feed.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.