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Second life of wood: technology to dissolve waste wood to get raw materials

Project description

Growing value chains from waste wood

A renewable economy in a bio-based chemical and fuel sector is crucial to mitigate the effects of climate change and environmental degradation. Each year about 1 billion tonnes of waste biomass is available globally from forestry and agriculture. Due to the ineffective and costly technologies, only half of the 70 million tonnes of European waste wood get recycled. The EU funded BioFlex project proposes a novelty technology that dissolves the waste wood to obtain raw materials for further utilisation. From the unwanted waste wood, it obtains low-cost raw materials to produce high-quality bioplastics, common chemicals and novel materials. This solution will reduce air and soil pollution and improve air quality while supporting governmental and industrial waste reduction targets.


We have developed the BioFlex solvent process that uses unwanted waste wood as a very cheap raw-material to produce clean and high-quality inputs for the production of renewable chemicals, fuels and materials. An inexpensive process separates the main components of wood: cellulose and lignin. These can then be turned into final products such as bio-plastics, common chemicals and novel materials.
There are a variety of new value chains that are potentially created through our technology. For example, using the waste wood from a local council, cellulose can be isolated, which is hydrolysed, fermented to succinic acid and then used in paint. The lignin isolated alongside the cellulose can be turned into a drop-in biodiesel sold at the local petrol station. Similarly, sawdust from a timber mill can be fractionated, the cellulose used to produce methylcellulose as a thickener in food, the lignin turned into a bio-derived plastic.
We are diverting wood waste from going to landfill or incineration and sawdust going into pellets. The European pellets market is saturated, also with pellets imported from the Americas. The lignin and cellulose produced from these currently underused wood resources can enter new, emerging, or existing value chains.
Our competition on the waste wood disposal side is incineration, offering energy recovery in some cases but resulting in the formation of toxic ash and contributing to air pollution. For some heavily treated waste wood there are no competitors except for costly and highly undesirable landfilling which are largely viewed as problematic by both waste producers and waste managers.
The market is estimated to be EUR 40.9 billion for BioFlex products and EUR 13.4 billion of waste wood recycling. We have established a clear timeline for commercialization and signed a number of agreements with partners to make this plan feasible. We have an interdisciplinary and dedicated team to make Bioflex and its products available on the market.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 50 000,00
The walbrook building, 25 walbrook, 9th floor
EC4N 8AF London
United Kingdom

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

London Inner London — West Camden and City of London
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 21 429,00