Sustainable material production from cellulose and lignin
Cellulose and lignin constitute abundant natural resources for material production, with the potential to substitute most of the currently used petroleum-based products. However, processing these major components of biomass into value-added products, such as cellulose nanocrystals and lignin nanoparticles, is strongly limited by their insolubility. Furthermore, this biomass conversion process involves the use of large volumes of caustic or toxic chemicals and clean water, and it generates hazardous waste. Funded by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions programme, the ENBIOMECH project plans to produce cellulose nanocrystals and lignin nanoparticles from biomass by employing certain enzymes that should enable solid-state chemical transformations. These reactions allow obtaining materials from solid reagents, eliminating the need for biopolymer solubilisation.
Fields of science
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