At the University of Washington scientist named Alhakim Nelson opened a unique method of yeast fermentation, with the participation of three-dimensional printing. While this method only being tested, but in the near future, the doctor along with his team will try to print and other substances, including protein compounds.
The production process
According to experts, they have developed a special bioreactor, which not only maintains the viability of bacteria within a few months, but can produce them in minutes. It is sufficient to use inexpensive chemicals and the three-dimensional printer.
The team of Dr. Nelson managed to develop a unique hydrogel, consisting of 70% water and 30% polymer infusion yeast. In addition, the team also designed and released a special printer to print this material.
The consistency of this substance it resembles peanut butter. When it is designed with extrusion. After 3D printing material takes the form of a thin lattice of layers, reminding CC, Then the hydrogel design is subjected to ultraviolet radiation, so it hardens. Side printed cubes have dimensions of 1 cm.
Prospects of development
What happens next with printed cubes? They are placed in a glucose solution to start the fermentation process in the brewery. A real discovery was the fact that Cuba not only began to ferment, but ethanol production occurred for four months in a row. Bioreactors produced alcohol is almost non-stop.
Scientists do not know exactly what causes the phenomenon of continuous fermentation. However, they are confident that the hydrogel lattice restrictions help to stop yeast cells from reproducing and aging. This discovery is of great importance for modern production of yeast drinks.
If this technology will develop in the industrial sector, it can pave the way for the continuous fermentation. This will displace the technology of batch processing, which is extensively used in our days.
Now the team of Dr. Nelson focuses on increasing the size of the yeast cubes of hydrogel. They also plan to create protein compounds using the additive technology.