LIBERATE is one of various Horizon 2020 projects focusing on processing of material feedstock using non-conventional energy sources (Call SPIRE02-2018). Below projects with which LIBERATE is collaborating and sharing results to maximise impact.
Furthermore, many projects financed by the Horizon 2020 framework programme develop solutions to value lignin. Below the ones with which LIBERATE is cooperating.
Natural resources are being exhausted due to the great demand of their services and the insufficient actions taken for their preservation. Against this background, the use of waste components from industrial activities as raw materials to obtain high value-added products is of great relevance. Lignin from pulping process is present all over Europe and represents a big source of underexploited material. There is an estimated 70 million tonnes of lignin available from pulping processes worldwide, but much of this is not isolated but burned onsite to provide steam for heat and power production. Until now only about 2% of the lignins available in the pulp and paper industry is commercially used comprising of about 1,000,000 tons/year lignosulphonates originating from sulphite pulping and 104,000 tons/year of kraft lignins produced in the kraft process
FALCON aims to convert this lignin-rich industrial waste of 2G biofuel plants to higher value products, in particular shipping fuels, fuel additives and chemical building blocks. This would be the next consecutive step in turning waste to products, thus minimizing waste and simultaneously providing new alternatives for fossil resource based processes. The FALCON process is based on enzymatic and mild chemical conversion of the lignin waste stream, providing a more environmentally friendly approach to the production of fuels and chemical building blocks. FALCON takes full advantage of the lessons learned over the last 150 years in the petrochemical industry with respect to design of the processes. This implies an initial treatment at the 2G bioethanol plant, converting the waste to a lignin oil that can be more easily transported and also directly used as a low sulphur shipping fuel. It will be further converted into fuel additives and chemical building blocks in centralized facilities.
The project aims to optimize the efficiency and increase the production capacity of this plant to up to 60,000 tons of ethanol per year, as well as to ensure a highly sustainable production process that uses co-products for renewable energy production and soil fertilization. Hence, LIGNOFLAG is supporting the EU in its efforts to reduce GHG emissions and thus accelerate the process of decarbonizing the transport sector. The project intends to establish efficient collaboration between the relevant actors along the whole value chain – from co-products utilization and valorisation (e.g. vinasse as a fertilizer) to advanced bio-ethanol production and product and technology distribution. The new full-scale sunliquid® flagship plant will also create green jobs, especially in rural areas. In doing so, a new value chain will be established and support the transformation from a fossil-based economy to a bio-based, circular economy
Europe’s position in the production of biochemicals from biomass and by-products is limited to a few compounds, while their demand is among the largest in the world. However, Europe has a lot of world leader chemical companies. On the other hand, lignocellulosic waste constitutes one of the most abundant resources without competing with food chain. REHAP’s 16 partners aim at revalorizing agricultural (wheat straw) and forestry (bark) waste through its recovery, and primary (sugars, lignin, tannins) and secondary (sugar acids, carboxylic acids, aromatics and resins) processing to turn them into novel materials, and considering Green Building as business case. The project will provide reductions in utilization of fossil resources of 80-100%, and energy utilization and CO2 emissions above 30%. Specifically, building blocks (1,4 and 2,3-Butanediol, estherpolyols), materials (PUs, phenolic resins, modified hydrolysis lignin) and products (wooden boards, insulation foams, cement, adhesive) will be obtained.
Bio-based industries are central to building a European circular economy; meanwhile, using Europe’s own biomass resources improves raw material security by reducing reliance on fossil-based feedstock imports. However, extracting higher-value compounds from lignin (a by-product of paper and pulp production), one of the most important low-cost feedstocks, is currently inefficient and expensive. The SElectiveLi project will address this challenge by using electrochemical processes that take advantage of surplus energy available via smart grids. This should reduce the cost of production as well as making it more effective and environmentally superior. Using this approach, SElectiveLi will extract a range of aldehydes for potential food, adhesive, and pharmaceutical applications and intermediates for conversion into polymers. It will also develop downstream separation and purification processes for the latter.