Wageningen, Netherlands
Wageningen, Netherlands

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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: LCE-12-2014 | Award Amount: 35.20M | Year: 2015

The purpose of the 2G BIOPIC project is to demonstrate the performance, the reliability and the sustainability, of the whole value chain of production of bioethanol from agricultural residues and wood. 2G BIOPIC aims to design, construct and optimize a second generation (2G) demonstration plant with a capacity of 1 T of biomass/h. This 2G plant is based on the scale-up and optimization of bioethanol production from an already validated pilot plan scale (50Kg/h) achieved in a previous project (FP7 BIOCORE). The innovative patented concept proposed by 2G BIOPIC consists of cleanly deconstruct lignocellulosic biomass before converting its components into high value products. Thanks to optimized process conditions, the polysaccharides fractions are free from degradation products and inhibitors, allowing a very high ethanol yield using a low amount of enzymes and yeasts. By combining this technology with advanced strains for enzymes and a production of yeast able to ferment more than 90% of C5 and C6 sugars of the biomass, the 2G BIOPIC technology will result in i) higher bioethanol yield per ton of biomass process (20% more compared to competing technologies), ii) multi-feedstocks interoperability, iii) higher profitability of the process through the production of a high value bio-based co-product: the BioligninTM . All critical steps of the value chain will be integrated to optimize bioethanol production (yield and production costs) and the high commercial value of the co-product (BioligninTM) will be demonstrated in the business case. Risk management will cover the all project, identifying potential risk and implementing mitigation plans. The data and experience generated during the project will demonstrate the technical viability, environmental, social and economical sustainability of the 2G BIOPIC technology and produce the knowledge necessary for the future scale-up to a flagship plant.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2013.3.3-04 | Award Amount: 9.11M | Year: 2013

OPTIBIOCAT is a 48 months project aimed at developing biocatalysts based on feruloyl esterases (FAEs) and glucuronoyl esterases (GEs) for production of phenolic fatty- and sugar- esters with antioxidant activity for cosmetic industry, expanding the number/type of industrial biotransformations. Selected FAEs and GEs available within the consortium will be improved for their thermo- and solvent- resistance and substrate specificity by site-directed mutagenesis and directed evolution. Novel enzymes will be discovered by mining for new genes from available genomes. An inventory of novel FAEs and GEs will be developed including 50 fungal and 500 bacterial esterases, 25 site-directed and 20 directed evolved mutants. Enzymatic performances will be optimized to enhance the yield (up to the theoretical yield of 100%) and productivity (up to 0.5-1 g/l/h) of reactions giving the main targeted antioxidants: butyl ferulate, p-coumarate, caffeate, sinapate and 5-O-(trans-feruloyl)-arabinofuranose (using FAEs), glucuronate and benzyl glucuronate (using GEs). FAEs and GEs will be also tested for production of other compounds with improved biological activity and properties of hydrophilicity/hydrophobicity for cosmetic applications. Cost-effective methods will be developed for production of the new biocatalysts, in the g/L scale, and for their technical application to produce antioxidants for cosmetic industry, up to 20L. Enzyme immobilization will increase their recyclability up to ten cycles. The ability of the developed catalysts to work in conditions miming the industrial ones with reduced use of solvents and lower temperature than the chemical routes will be demonstrated. The techno-economic viability and environmental friendliness will be assessed considering a full industrial scale scenario. OPTIBIOCAT involves a highly skilled and multidisciplinary partnership of 16 partners from 8 EU countries, and it is a strongly industry driven project through the participation of 8 SMEs and 1 large company.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE-2007-3-2-01 | Award Amount: 4.00M | Year: 2008

The aim of the proposed DISCO project is to develop more efficient and therefore more cost-effective cellulosic and hemicellulosic enzyme tools for the enhanced hydrolysis of pre-treated lignocellulosic biomass in simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) conditions for bioethanol production. The focus will be on enzymes having increased catalytic activity on various types of relevant European lignocellulosic biomass. In addition enzymes with lower affinity for lignin shall also be developed. Such enzymes would increase the effective amount of cellulases/ hemicellulases for cellulose hydrolysis. Furthermore the recycling of these enzymes would be applicable. The approach in this proposal is to discover the desired activities by combining classical and modern screening technologies. The enzymes will be produced in suitable host systems for industrial enzyme production. The project also focuses on elucidation of enzymatic hydrolysis mechanisms, about which there is a paucity of knowledge. The project will determine the limiting structural factors in these mechanisms by characterisation of the substrate during the course of the hydrolysis and the remaining recalcitrant residue. Synergy between different cellulase and hemicellulases components will also be addresses on the chosen lignocellulosic substrates. Furthermore, the project seeks to demonstrate the proof of concept with the cellulolytic enzymes in a pilot scale using the most relevant European feedstock pretreated wheat straw and related high-volume co-products.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: BIOTEC-3-2014 | Award Amount: 11.39M | Year: 2015

Oxygen functionalities are key functional groups in many of todays chemicals and materials. The efficient introduction of oxygen-functionalities into raw materials are key chemical transformations in bulk and fine chemicals. Innovative bio-catalytic oxidation routes using molecular oxygen (from air) under benign and mild (pH) conditions such as ambient temperature and pressure can greatly improve the sustainability and economics of processes, but were so far mainly been applied in the pharma segments. In this segment, the enzyme-catalyzed step often represents the highest added value and the high price of the end-product (> 1000/kg) justifies less than optimal enzyme production and limitations in its catalytic efficiency. In order to achieve the widening of industrial application of enzymatic bio-oxidation processes to also larger volume but lower price chemical markets, ROBOX will demonstrate the techno-economic viability of bio-transformations of four types of robust oxidative enzymes: P450 monooxygenases (P450s), Baeyer-Villiger MonoOxygenase (BVMOs), Alcohol DeHydrogenase (ADH) and Alcohol OXidase (AOX) for which target reactions have already been validated on lab-scale in pharma, nutrition, fine & specialty chemicals and materials applications. ROBOX will demonstrate 11 target reactions on large scale for these markets in order to prepare them for scale up to commercial-scale plants. ROBOX is industry-driven with 2 major industrial players and 6 SMEs. It will assess the potential of technologies applied to become platform technologies technologies (multi-parameter screening systems, computational methodologies, plug bug expression systems) for broad replication throughout the chemical industry. The markets addressed within ROBOX represent a joint volume of over 6.000 ktons/year. The introduction of bio-oxidation processes is expected to bring substantial reductions in cost (up to -50%), energy use (-60%), chemicals (-16%) and GHG-emissions (-50%).


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE-2007-3-2-06 | Award Amount: 8.10M | Year: 2009

The NEMO project provides novel efficient enzymes and microbes for 2nd generation bioethanol production. It generates through metabolic engineering and mutagenesis & screening approaches robust yeast strains that have a broad substrate range and can (co-)ferment C6 and C5 sugars to ethanol with high productivity (rate and yield), and that are significantly more stress tolerant, i.e. inhibitor, ethanol and thermotolerant than the current S.cerevisiae strains used in ethanol production. The NEMO project also identifies and improves enzymes for hydrolysis of biomasses relevant for Europe. Novel enzymes are identified and improved through various approaches, based on screening, broad comparative genomics analyses, and protein engineering. These efforts will generate more thermostable enzymes for high temperature hydrolysis, more efficient enzymes for hydrolysis of the resistant structures in lignocellulose such as crystalline cellulose and lignin-hemicellulose complexes, enzymes with reduced affinity on lignin, and efficient thermo and mesophilic enzyme mixtures that are optimised and tailor-made for the relevant biomasses for Europe and European industry. These novel biocatalysts are tested in an iterative manner in process relevant conditions, including also pilot-scale operations, which ensure that the novel enzymes and microbes will be superior in real process conditions. Furthermore, optimal enzyme, microbe and process regime combinations are identified, providing basis for the development of the most economic and ecoefficient overall processes. The impact of the NEMO project on 2nd generation bioethanol production is significant because it provides most realistic but widely applicable technologies that could be exploited broadly by European industry. Its impact goes also much beyond bioethanol because NEMO provides technology improvements that are directly applicable and crucial for efficient and economic production of also other biofuels and bulk chemicals.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2011.3.1.9-1 | Award Amount: 4.77M | Year: 2012

Within the FP7 PEOPLE project (Blue4Glue), Fraunhofer Institute (IFAM) and Procter and Gamble discovered a (PPO based) enzymatic process used by marine-organisms, which produce polymers in a much simpler way (less process steps) than industry does in classical chemistry. BIO-MIMETIC aims to transfer this new scientific knowledge into a blueprint for a novel (pre-)industrial enzymatic-based bio-polymerization process. It involves research partners (IFAM and UNITOV) with experience in enzymatic transformation and bio-based synthetic polymers, as well as expert SMEs such as Dyadic (enzymes), CIMV (biomass transformation into bio-chemistry) and CULGI (computational modeling of bio-chemical processes) to develop the process that firstly transforms biomass (lignin) into new bio-based polymers (pseudo peptides). These will used to create respectively: 1) Bioconjugated copolymers, that will be tested in detergents (by P&G) 2) Bio-cross-linked adhesive gels, to be experimented in antiageing cosmetics and in bio-textiles preparation (by an SME cosmetic producer MAVI). Potential environmental benefits are over 124 kton/yr less toxic solvents to produce chemicals, over 1 Billion kWh of energy savings (room temperature process) and a drastically reduced CO2 footprint i.e. replace 8000 Mtons of petrochemical based deposition aides and in the future substitute a large amount of phenol and phenolic derivatives, which are used to produce chemical intermediates for a myriad of applications. BIO-MIMETIC will carry out LCA and LCC (cost) assessments over the value chain as input to business plan and will use a new SME LCA tool (cCALC) to develop an LCA showcase, which will come available for SMEs. The cCALC tool and showcase will be freely downloadable as part of the exploitation plan targeted at the market uptake of project results in the emerging European market of bio-based products, projected to grow towards 250 billion Euro by 2020.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: LCE-11-2014 | Award Amount: 4.60M | Year: 2015

Biobutanol is an attractive commodity chemical and advanced biofuel with superior properties but the 1st gen process suffers from technical and economical constraints. ButaNexT project aims to overcome some of those technical barriers through a novel combination of innovations. Individual stages of the process supply chain will be developed, validated and optimized at lab-scale and then integrated and demonstrated at pilot scale. A holistic approach is proposed to produce cost-competitive biobutanol from 3 types of lignocellulosic biomass and waste in a sustainable way being flexible to accommodate regionally specific feedstocks. Project exploitable outputs include: (1)novel low CAPEX two-step pretreatment process that releases hemicellulose and cellulose from recalcitrant feedstocks for further enzymatic and/or fermentation processing, (2)new tailored enzyme cocktail yielding highly fermentable sugars at low enzyme dosages and lower cost, (3)superior clostridial strains with enhanced production characteristics i.e. butanol and inhibitor tolerance, (4)high productivity fermentation process including a novel in-situ product recovery step. Technology advances allow sustainable feedstock diversification, improve conversion yields and efficiency, reduce energy requirements, and water usage. We expect significant reductions in cost (target $800/T which equates to 50% of current 1st gen solvent production in China) as well as enhanced energy balances and reduced GHG emissions vs 1st gen biofuel production (target a 85% reduction). The project output (a technically and economically-validated process) will provide the EU with a tremendous opportunity to build an advanced biofuel business from sustainable feedstocks. This is strategically important to contribute to the European 10% target for renewable transportation fuels for 2020. The proposed project fits into the topic Developing next generation technologies for biofuels and sustainable alternative fuels (LCE-11-2014)


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2013.3.2-02;KBBE.2013.3.6-01 | Award Amount: 11.91M | Year: 2013

Microalgae are a promising feedstock for sustainable supply of commodities and specialties for food and non-food products. Despite this potential the implementation is still limited which is mainly due to unfavourable economics. Major bottlenecks are the lack of available biomass at acceptable costs and the absence of appropriate biorefinery technologies. The 4-year MIRACLES project aims to resolve these hurdles by development of integrated, multiple-product biorefinery for valuable specialties from algae for application in food, aquafeeds and non-food products. The focus is on development and integration of mild cell disruption and environmentally friendly extraction and fractionation processes including functionality testing and product formulation based on established industrial strains. The project will also develop new technologies for optimization and monitoring of valuable products in the algal biomass during cultivation and innovative photobioreactor and harvesting technology that will enable substantial cost reduction. A new technology will be developed for CO2 concentration from the air for algal growth and new industrial algae strains for extreme locations will be selected via bioprospecting to expand the resource base for the algae industry and enable cultivation in areas less suitable for agriculture such as deserts. The work is supported by market assessment, integral biorefinery designs, techno-economic and sustainability assessment, and the creation of business plans for full valorisation of algal biomass. Integrated value chains will be demonstrated to deliver proof-of-concept and demonstrate economic feasibility. MIRACLES is an industry driven R&D and innovation project with a multidisciplinary approach aimed at generating robust business cases through technology development. The consortium has 26 partners with 11 prominent research organisations. Strong industrial leadership is guaranteed through the participation of 12 SMEs and 3 NMI/end users.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2012.2.3-02 | Award Amount: 1.48M | Year: 2012

The HealthBread project (HealthBread product innovation based on FP6 HEALTHGRAIN results and knowledge) will, based on an SME and consumer oriented approach, develop whole grain and white breads with further improved nutritional and product quality by applying scientific and technological knowledge from the EU FP6 HEALTHGRAIN project into production and marketing of commercially viable, healthier bread. The HealthBread Manual, with guidelines for choice of raw materials, processing and nutritional statements, in the languages of the participating SMEs bakeries will translate the scientific knowledge into practice and enable them to produce improved bread.

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