Improving by-product output through integrated closed loop biorefineries

Biorefineries are facilities that convert biomass feedstocks into bio-based energy, fuels, materials and chemicals using green / sustainable processes. With abundant resources of renewable biomass available globally, biorefineries offer a long term potential to meet our global resource needs whilst combating the effects of climate change. Existing concepts of biorefineries are based on starch and therefore in direct competiton to food. This project is helping second generation biorefinery concepts using lignocellulose as feedstock to deliver an innovative and commercially viable solution by developing a sustainable and economically viable integrated biorefineries – with improved economic and environmental benefits.

Our part of the project is focused on the generation of bulk chemicals and specialty chemicals derived from enzymatic hydrolysis of hemicellulose. We are screening enzymes and enzyme systems from saccharolytic, thermophilic bacteria for the degradation of hemicellulose. Products released by these enzymes from the biomass or fractions of it are investigated and characterized.

The project is supported by: