Project 5 - Fed-batch control

Fed-batch control was a collaboration between the Department of Automatic Control, the Department of Chemical Engineering and Novozymes. The project started in the second half of 2010 and focused on controllability. It focused on developing, improving and optimizing fermentation control strategies for the B. licheniformis fed-batch processes. The project ended in 2013 but the research continued in PiiAbio.

This process can produce vast amounts of protein but is sensitive to overdosing and process disturbances which lead to process variations and possibly crashed fermentations. There is thus a strong motivation for developing more robust control strategies for this process. The project aim was to develop a general method for finding optimal control strategies for various B. licheniformis production strains.

In addition to developing and evaluating bioprocess control strategies which can improve robustness and yield of specific B. licheniformis processes, a key interest was that the developed methods were general enough to allow for implementation on various enzyme-producing processes utilising different B. licheniformis strains. This required the identification of key physiological variables in the strains and an understanding of the interaction between these properties and the way the process is controlled.