GreenSolRes will demonstrate the production of levulinic acid from lignocellulosic feedstock.
Grant Agreement number 720695
7.45 million â‚¬
48 monthsÂ (09/2016 â€“ 08/2020)
GFBiochemicals is the only company to produce levulinic acid at commercial scale directly from biomass. In 2008, a group of biobased chemical experts saw the significant potential of levulinic acid to replace petroleum-based products across a range of market sectors and founded the company to develop the production technology needed for this revolution. GFBiochemical is coordinating GreenSolRes and its main tasks in the project are selection of feedstock and the execution of demonstration scale plant trials for the production of levulinic acid and then hydrogenation, business case development and dissemination.
HENKEL, founded in 1876, holds globally leading market positions in consumer (Laundry & Home + Beauty Care) and industrial businesses (Adhesive Technologies) with well-known brands like Persil, Schwarzkopf and Loctite. The Dax-30 company (headquarters in DĂĽsseldorf, Germany) is proud of its 49,000 employees from more than 120 nations worldwide, located at 164 manufacturing and 17 major R&D sites around the world. The main task of HENKEL in the GreenSolRes project is the demonstration of applications for the levulinic acid based solvents and the development of levulinic acid based building blocks for products of the business unit Adhesive Technologies.
RWTH Aachen, is among the leading European educational and research institutions with its 260 institutes in nine faculties. The work of the research centers of RWTH Aachen is closely oriented towards the current needs of business and industry. This leads to numerous developments and inventions that are patented and exploited. The Universityâ€™s innovative capacity is further reflected in the high number of business startups, currently more than 1,400. As a result, around 32,000 jobs have been created in the region in the last 25 years. In GreenSolRes, RWTH Aachen University will design and optimize the process converting levulinic acid into desired products 2-methyltetrahydrofuran (2-MTHF), gamma-valerolactone (GVL) and 1-methyl-1,4-butanediol (MeBDO). The design for scaling up this process to demo plant will be laid out to build the plant in cooperation with GFBiochemicals.
LIKAT is one of the largest publicly-funded research institutes in Europe in the area of applied catalysis, combining both homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis. The institute currently employs about 300 people. It is housed in modern laboratories and has an excellent infrastructure, including state-of-the art analytical facilities. The research for GreenSolRes will take place in the Department of Catalysis with renewables resources, headed by Prof. Dr. Johannes G. de Vries. The main task of LIKAT in this project is to develop new catalytic synthesis of poly-2-methyl-THF, poly-gamma-valerolactone, polyesters made from methyl butanediol and various diacids and then scale-up of these polymers.
SYNCOM is a consulting firm founded in 1997 with the focus on innovation management. Physicists, Chemists, Engineers and Business managers apply management expertise and scientific know-how to support their clients in realizing innovations. Key business sectors are bio-refineries, materials and mechanical/electrical engineering. In GreenSolRes, SYNCOM contributes management and administrative support to the consortium as a whole and assist the coordinator in some of the day to day management tasks of the project. Additionally, SYNCOM will assist in organisation and steering of the dissemination activities, contribute to the LCA and business case development.
HYBRID has served the chemical industry with respect to contract R&D in advanced nanostructured catalyst development and automated screening since its launch in 2005. It has own IP on nanocatalysts that are in cases being subjected to plant trials. Currently, Hybrid has about 15 multinational customers. HYBRID was participant in FP7 granted programs NanoHost, HiCat, INCAS, DEMCAMER and REFORCELL as well as in CatchBio, a 29 Mâ‚¬ Dutch research effort related to catalytic utilization of renewable feedstocks. In GreenSolRes, HYBRID is responsible for the scale up of the production of the ruthenium complex catalyst required for the upgrading of LVA to 2-MTHF, GVL and MeBDO in the demo plant. After final quality control, HYBRID will provide technical support related to the catalyst application and the quality control.
VITO is an independent research and technology organisation in the areas of cleantech and sustainable development, elaborating solutions for the large societal challenges of today. VITO provides innovative and high-quality solutions, whereby large and small companies can gain a competitive advantage. The organisation advises industry and governments on determining their policy for the future. VITO has 750 highly qualified employees who work on international projects all around the world. The environmental impact assessment in GreenSolRes will be performed by experts of the Environmental Risk and Health Unit of VITO. Within GreenSolRes, VITO will be responsible for the hazard evaluation for human health and environmental impact assessment. The risk assessment of the biomass based chemicals will be done according to the EU guidelines.