Exploitation and valorisation of marine resources
Gratelupia turuturu (photo credits : IFREMER)
The sustainable exploitation of marine resources has become a societal concern on a global scale. The ocean provides food resources of high quality nutritive value, but its resources have also high potential value in numerous sectors like marine ecology and aquaculture, as well as the energy, pharmaceutical and cosmetic sectors. With regard to the sustainable use of these resources, one should make optimal use of the resources collected for the food industry by exploiting and developing these resources that are currently only little or under-exploited.
In the context of COSELMAR, the research work will focalise on enhancement activities to prevent a risk to health or the environment (action 2.1 & 2.2) and on the innovation of analytical tools for these risks (action 2.3).
Safe sea water production during algal blooms (action 2.1)
The main aim is to prevent health risks in the process of applications for drinking water production or for aquaculture pens. The drop in performance of filtration media of seawater during algal bloom can lead to contaminations of microalgae and toxins. The bio-clogging of membranes and the drop in production of drinking water lead to an operational loss that can pose an economic threat for the sectors concerned. It can even cause a risk of disruption in the case of shellfish production.
Valorisation of invasive species, macro-algae or shellfish (action 2.2)
The objective is to develop new ways to add value to invasive species whose proliferation is not currently controlled. One solution for adding value to such species would be to extract interesting components from the collected biomass for human or animal consumption or for cosmetics (protein, pigments, antioxidants...). We are trying to prevent an environmental threat by limiting the proliferation of invasive species in the absence of preventive solutions. Special attention will be paid to the implementation of soft methods that will decrease water and energy consumption (enzymatic hydrolysis, or classic extraction followed by fractionation using membrane techniques, reactive extrusion...)
Microbial growth dynamics estimates (action 2.3)
To understand and formalise the environmental factors that influence the growth of micro-organisms (bacteria, microalgae...) and in particular the interactions between the micro-organisms is important so as to develop strategies to control the impact. These estimation models of the microbial growth dynamics will help in the analysis and control of health risks (human health through the control of bio-preservation – biological control with the help of the micro-organisms – acting to limit pathogenic strains like listeria) or for the environment (bioremediation or to promote the growth and resistance of oysters for example).
The expected outcomes of this work are the improvement of the fundamentals in numerous areas and industrial sectors (food ingredients, marine ecology and aquaculture, pharmaceutical industries and cosmetics, etc.). It concerns mostly the contamination and decontamination processes of bivalve molluscs by algal toxins and the bio-clogging mechanisms of filtration membranes; proposal of new solutions for the aquaculture sector (detoxification after the harvest of bivalve molluscs); progress in the development of methods in microbial ecology aiming at improved knowledge and control of marine ecosystems (prevention and bioremediation) and in process engineering to add value to marine resources (sea water, macroalgae).
The approach used in actions 2.1 and 2.2 (adding value to resources) will imply methods used in process engineering from the labscale to the industrial scale. To achieve this aim, we will explore knowledge models describing the flow, mixing and mass transfer in an extruder. We will also generate orders-of-magnitude criteria characterising the performance of the pre-treatment processes of competitors’ sea water to allow their technical-economical comparison. Finally, the modelling growth kinetics between microorganisms that interact is directly linked to the bio-corrosion aspect of the colonisation action of the integrated axis.
Axis coordinators: Régis Baron, Ifremer & Patrick Bourseau, Université de Nantes