DEVELOPMENT OF MICROORGANISMS WITH IMPROVED TRANSPORT AND BIOSURFACTANT ACTIVITY FOR ENHANCED OIL RECOVERY
Description: Diverse microorganisms were screened for biosurfactant production and anaerobic growth at elevated salt concentrations to obtain candidates most suitable for microbial oil recovery. Seventy percent of the 205 strains tested, mostly strains of Bacillus mojavensis, Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus licheniformis, and Bacillus sonorensis, produced biosurfactants aerobically and 41% of the strains had biosurfactant activity greater than Bacillus mojavensis JF-2, the current candidate for oil recovery. Biosurfactant activity varied with the percentage of the 3-hydroxy-tetradecanoate isomers in the fatty acid portion of the biosurfactant. Changing the medium composition by incorporation of different precursors of 3-hydroxy tetradecanoate increased the activity of biosurfactant. The surface tension and critical micelle concentration of 15 different, biosurfactant-producing Bacillus strains was determined individually and in combination with other biosurfactants. Some biosurfactant mixtures were found to have synergistic effect on surface tension (e.g. surface tension was lowered from 41 to 31 mN/m in some cases) while others had a synergistic effect on CMD-1 values. We compared the transport abilities of spores from three Bacillus strains using a model porous system to study spore recovery and transport. Sand-packed columns were used to select for spores or cells with the best transport abilities through brine-saturated sand. Spores of Bacillus mojavensis strains JF-2 and ROB-2 and a natural recombinant, strain C-9, transported through sand at very high efficiencies. The earliest cells/spores that emerged from the column were re-grown, allowed to sporulate, and applied to a second column. This procedure greatly enhanced the transport of strain C-9. Spores with enhanced transport abilities can be easily obtained and that the preparation of inocula for use in MEOR is feasible. Tertiary oil recovery experiments showed that 10 to 40 mg/l of JF-2 biosurfactant in the presence of 0.1 mM 2,3-butanediol and 1 g/l of partially hydrolyzed polyacrylamide (PHPA) recovered 10-40% of residual oil from Berea ...
Date: May 31, 2004
Creator: McInerney, M.J.; Youssef, N.; Fincher, T.; Maudgalya, S.K.; Folmsbee, M.J.; Knapp, R. et al.
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