Project 4 Downstream processing (2024)

Course manager

Esperanza Jurado

Semester schedule

Autumn (13-week period)



Language of instruction


Course type



Competences corresponding to the participation in Project 1, 2, and 3 together with Analytical chemistry 1, Enzyme technology, Chemical unit operations, and Chemical engineering.


The course will enable the student to select the correct sequence of unit operations for the purification of bioproducts and to understand which properties will be decisive for the choice of purification strategy. Likewise, the student will obtain an insight into the methods of analysis that are applied in the purification process and how product and purity requirements will affect the process. Thus, the student will be enable to combine and upscale a purification process.

During the project part, work will be focused on a practical problem for a process design in connection with an optimal purification sequence and characterization of a bioproduct. The project will focus on trial planning; quality and validation; project management; and scientific communication. In this course, it is necessary to apply chemical engineering principles learned from other courses. Project results will be set out in a project report.


Downstream processing

  • Bioproducts such as enzymes, antibiotics, proteins and organic acids, food coloring
  • Purification techniques and strategies, comprising the significance of factors such as time, separation, capacity, and yield
  • Product properties' significance for purification strategies
  • Methods of analysis in the quantification and determination of e.g. purity and activity
  • A discussion of the purification strategy for given scientific publications, the selection of unit operations, methods of analysis, and the obtained results

Process design

  • Apply a systematic approach for process design
  • Make design-related decisions
  • Use computer process design tools
  • Perform process economics analysis

Project work, laboratory skills, and communication

  • Project work with focus on business case development 
  • Project management tools. Quality and validation of trial data
  • Report writing with focus on discussion and perspectives

Learning targets

On completion of the course, the student is expected to be able to:


  • Describe the various stages of purification and the purification issues relating to time, separation, capacity, and yield
  • Explain what properties of given bioproducts influence the choice of purification strategy and unit operations 
  • Describe the function and potential benefits of given unit operations for the purification of bioproducts
  • Understand and explain the basic steps for a systematic process design
  • Understand and explain the development and application of a business plan


  • Prioritize between time, separation, capacity and yield at the various stages of purification and relate this to the choice of unit operation
  • Apply the properties of given bioproducts in the selection and preparation of a plausible purification design
  • Demonstrate an overview of the application of analytical methods and select relevant methods for purification and activity determination as well as bioproduct quantification
  • Make relevant calculations of given unit operations for the purpose of bioproduct purification


  • Discuss given scientific papers' choice of purification strategy, unit operations and analysis methods and, also, comment on the results and discussion sections
  • Explain and make calculations of how changes of a unit operation will affect the other unit operations involved in the purification process
  • Apply the properties of a bioproduct in the analysis, planning, discussion and assessment of its purification and characterization
  • Select, combine, discuss and execute relevant purification techniques and methods of analysis in the quantification of these relative to a chosen bioproduct
  • Take a critical view of applied methods and results
  • Present and discuss selected aspects relative to the operationalization of the results of the project work

Teaching method

Seminars, project supervision, practical experimental work, and company visits

Qualifications for examination participation

  • Fulfilment of the requirements for compulsory participation as given in the study programme part 2.4  
  • Participation in all planned company visits
  • Participation in all planned teaching activities involving external lecturers
  • Participation in laboratory exercises, project work, status seminars, and acceptance of associated mandatory papers 

If a student does not fulfil the requirements for compulsory participation she/he can be excluded from the project group and hence, shall do an individual project.  

All shall be executed and submitted pursuant to guidelines set out by the course manager.

Examination and aids

  • Submission of project report
  • Oral examination, where each project group presents their project in common (20 min.) and have a common discussion afterwards (20 min.). Hereafter, each student is examined individually. Duration of individual examination: 10 min. pr. student.

Permitted aids: Project report and project presentation. No access to the internet.

The final assessment shall comprise the following elements: Project report (50%) and oral examination (50%).




The 7-point grading scale