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<>AFM - Alcohol Fermentation Monitor

Satisfied Users

“The AFM has become one of the most important instruments in our QA lab.”

San Feng Maltha
Scientist, Royal Nedalco

“During the past decade, we at Royal Nedalco in The Netherlands, have used the Alcohol Fermentation Monitor for standard feedstock testing, general process development and design. The AFM provides a very user-friendly and easy to clean means for measuring metabolic yeast activity, even for staff that have no experience with fermentation technology. It is now one of the most important QA tools in our fermentation laboratory.”


Royal Nedalco, a subsidiary company of the Dutch sugar producer Cosun, is a leading producer of ethanol of agricultural origin in Europe. | www.nedalco.com 

Frank Laumen, M.Sc.
Senior Scientist, DSM White Biotechnology

“At DSM White Biotechnology we are using the AFM to develop the biomass to ethanol process. We are using it to test enzymes, to test micro organisms and to actually perform process development. The AFM helps us to perform a series of simultaneous experiments while measuring kinetics in time.”


DSM creates innovative products and services in life sciences and materials sciences, contributing to the quality of life. | www.dsm.com 

Hans van Dijken Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus Industrial Biotechnology, Delft University of Technology

“As a yeast scientist I am involved in a lot of studies on alcoholic fermentation. So you can imagine that this Alcohol Fermentation Monitor is of much interest to me. It can be used for the production of alcohol such as beer brewing and wine making. Especially interesting is its application for the production of the second generation bioethanol, that is production of alcohol from plant waste. The fermentation liquid in this particular case is very, very viscous and therefore this machine contains exceptionally strong magnets.”


Professor Van Dijken’s scientific contributions include the valorization of fundamental research in industrial projects, such as the production of organic acids, amino acids and alcohols by yeast. 

“Iogen uses the AFM continually during the fermentation design process for its ethanol facility.”

Dr. Ir. Jan-Maarten Geertman
Staff Scientist, Iogen Corporation

“Iogen has been using HaloteC’s AFM for more than a year now. We use it to measure fermentation rates, screen different yeast strains for performance, and to measure kinetics. It is a quick and efficient tool and we are very satisfied with the performance.”


Iogen is a leading biotechnology firm specializing in cellulosic ethanol - a fully renewable, advanced biofuel. Iogen also develops, manufactures and markets enzymes used to modify and improve the processing of natural fibers within the textile, animal feed, and pulp and paper. | www.iogen.ca 

Tom Elink Schuurman, B.Sc.
Scientist, Bird Engineering

“For us as a company, the AFM limits the amount of time needed for the development of new processes. The AFM enables us to measure on a small scale and is thus the missing link between shake flask experiments and large scale fermentations.”





Alcohol Fermentation Monitor

EASY, QUICK and ACCURATE...The Alcohol Fermentation Monitor.

The Alcohol Fermentation Monitor (AFM) is a robust and user-friendly laboratory parallel bioreactor that allows for accurate comparisons of carbon conversion rates and yields for six simultaneous anaerobic fermentations.

afm product overview

Monitoring the amount of CO2(g) that evolves from a fermentation broth under well controlled conditions is a reliable comparison method that has proven to be very useful in all industries that use anaerobic fermentations. Because carbon dioxide production is stoichiometrically coupled with carbon source conversion, very useful metabolic data can be obtained.

The AFM provides very accurate standard measuring of CO2(g) from six parallel fermentations that is both very low in maintenance and very easy to use.

Simple yet powerful—the perfect combination for a broad selection of applications.

Easily achieve accurate comparisons of carbon conversion rates and yields for independent fermentations. Conditions such as temperature and agitation speed are controlled to allow accurate strain type, carbon source and nutrient comparisons without specialized fermentation skills.

The AFM is equipped with very strong magnetic stirrers, able to handle viscous media and feedstocks such as lignocellulose hydrolysates. For each fermenter, stirrer speed and temperature can be set independently. Time-dependent programs are also easy with the AFM. Fully controlled with user friendly PC software, the Alcohol Fermentation Monitor uses Microsoft Excel® for generating advanced reports containing all measured data, data analysis tables and corresponding graphs.

afm bottle

Modern and Straightforward Control Software

The AFM system is fully controlled with user-friendly PC software. The software is intuitively designed with a “no need for a manual” approach. The entire operation of the AFM can be mastered within 10 minutes, even by untrained staff.

afm software 1

Each fermenter flask is controlled individually and can be started and stopped and started again at any time during other running experiments. Conversion rates and yields can accurately be measured as a function of feedstock, yeast strains or other process conditions such as medium temperature.

The AFM control software allows for convenient storage of experimental data and easy data comparison. Moreover, performance indicators can be calculated automatically for large sets of experiments.

afm software 2

The AFM control software is password protected, all user actions are logged and stored automatically and data is stored in encrypted form (21-CFR Part 11).

Many satisfied users involved in biomass to ethanol conversion processes describe the AFM not only as the perfect screening machine for general research on anaerobic yeast fermentations, but also as a powerful, time saving tool for plant design and process optimization. A very accurate characterization of the fermentation quality can be obtained, without the need for highly educated laboratory staff, which is an important, money saving feature.


Publications with referral to the AFM (previously BAM):

Pretreatment of reed by wet oxidation and subsequent utilization of the pretreated fibers for ethanol production

Simple and convenient on-line monitoring of alcoholic fermentation in laboratory experiments

Ethanol fermentation of various pretreated and hydrolyzed substrates at low initial pH


Typical AFM applications include
  • Measure conversion rates and yields of lignocellulose hydrolysates into biofuels
  • Test and compare different yeast strains or different feedstock/substrates
  • Quality control of regular/commercial yeast
  • Quality control of traditional feedstock (such as molasses)
  • Conversion of wort into beer
  • Conversion of grape juice into wine
  • Alcohol tolerance and toxicity studies
  • Industrial and academic research on yeast and potable alcohol/bio-ethanol/biobutanol production

The AFM - Features

  • Very user friendly laboratory device for monitoring anaerobic, metabolic yeast activity for alcohol production
  • Six independent yeast fermentations can be carried out simultaneously
  • Standard 250 or 500 ml Schott DuranTM flasks
  • Stirrer speeds and temperatures can be set or time programmed for each fermenter flask individually
  • Accurate comparison of conversion rates and yields under different conditions such as temperature, strain type, carbon source or nutrients
  • Much easier to operate and clean than standard fermenter systems
  • Fully controlled with user-friendly PC control and data analysis software
  • Automatic generation of advanced reports containing all measured data, data analysis tables and corresponding graphs
  • Very strong magnetic stirrers, able to handle very viscous media
  • Proven value for research and QA purposes in all fields of yeast research and (bio) ethanol production

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