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LTU infrastructure to be upgraded as part of EU-project BIOMAC
Luleå University of Technology (LTU) has been granted funding within the EU-project BIOMAC that aims at creating an ecosystem to produce nano-structured bio-based materials for market applications. As one of 17 pilot lines, LTU’s organosolv reactor – which is part of the Treesearch infrastructure – will be upgraded to a fully continuous system.

Nano-structured bio-based materials (NBMs) offer solutions to many of the challenges that society faces today. However, only a small number of such materials are currently commercially available. BIOMAC (European Sustainable BIO-based nanoMAterials Community) is a Horizon2020 project that works to facilitate a collaborative ecosystem for the development, testing and upscaling of NBMs and bio-based products in the fields of automotive, agriculture, food packaging, construction, and printed electronics. The BIOMAC ecosystem consists of 17 Pilot Lines that will be available for open access, one of them being the organosolv reactor at LTU which is also part of the accessible infrastructure in Treesearch.

LTUs semi-continuous organosolv-steam explosion pre-treatment is used for fractionating lignocellulosic biomass (e.g. agricultural and forest residues) into its three main polymer components: cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin. The instrument allows to combine the effects of steam explosion with that of hemicellulose and lignin solubilization (organosolv) in ethanol/water mixtures under pressure and temperatures up to 200 °C.

In the scope of the BIOMAC project, the organosolv reactor will be upgraded to a fully continuous system by adding a biomass feeder that moves biomass from room temperature and pressure to the main reactor. This means that the process of producing a solid fraction containing mainly cellulose, a liquid fraction containing hemicellulose and lignin, will be fully automated.

LTUs project grant will thus not only have major positive effects for the European commercialisation of NBMs, but also for Treesearch and its associated researchers that will receive access to and support in using the upgraded organosolv reactor in the future.


Read up more about BIOMAC here

Visit LTUs website for Biochemical Process Engineering

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