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M.A. Sanromán, M.A. Longo, M. Pazos

University of Vigo (SPAIN)
Nowadays, the engineering process teaching is mainly focus on development and understanding of existing industrial activities and processes [1]. Students are guided through the study of real industrial applications and only in few cases new and innovative approaches are presented.
However previous to industrial application, scientific research activities, in order to evaluate and develop processes, are necessary. These scientific research activities are the first stage of each industrial application in which industrial process viability and optimization are studied. Furthermore, these studies are the main responsible of the implementation or not implementation of the process at industrial level.
In order to have a deep knowledge about the industrial applications, it is proposed that the students should be connected with the different stages to develop a new process: from lab scale to industrial application through the pilot plant. For this purpose, the scientific research articles are presented as an attractive tool. Scientific articles show innovative applications and/or system improvements from lab scale up to pilot plan. Hence in these documents, the first stages of new industrial process development are showed.
In this study, the use of scientific research articles is proposed as an instrument to approach students to the initial stages of an industrial process. The new tool was applied was Fermentation Process Engineering. This subject belongs to the fourth course of Biology degree.
For this purpose, a work in which scientific research article must be used was proposed to the students. The methodology to develop this work was:
1. Selection of scientific article in which innovative bioprocess should be develop. Several topics were proposed to facilitate this task.
2. Summary about the proposed subject. In the execution of this part the student can search additional information in other sources different to the article.
3. Oral exposition of the proposed article.

The work was developed along the academic period. Periodically meetings were accomplished in order to evaluate the status of the work. Although initially there were some troubles with the students with regard to use scientific articles written in English, the results obtained after the seminars were very positive. It can be conclude that this new tool increased the knowledge about the initial stages of industrial process and the new processes in development.

[1] Najafpour G.D. Biochemical engineering and biotechnology (2007) Elsevier Radarweg 29, PO Box 211, 1000 AE Amsterdam, The Netherlands