Lignocellulosic crops are present on Earth in abundance, making it a highly interesting option. Wageningen Food & Biobased Research has extensive knowledge of and experience with the pre-processing of these types of crops.
By lignocellulose we mean all fibrous crops: Wood, straw, grasses (miscanthus, reed grass, reeds) and side streams (sugar cane and palm oil side streams). Targeted pre-processing allows the hydrolysis of lignocellulose into fermentable sugars and other semi-finished or end products, such as packaging materials.
Green building blocks
Current research programmes of Wageningen Food & Biobased Research focus on the development of processes such as mechanical hydrolysis, alkaline pretreatment and mild-acid hydrolysis. Wageningen Food & Biobased Research examines how these processes can be linked to fermentation or chemical conversion. This allows us to make green building blocks for products, materials and energy from lignocellulosic crops.
Wageningen Food & Biobased Research conducts biomass pre-processing pilots on both small (100 ml), medium-sized (2-4 L) and pilot (400 L) scale. We can subsequently use pretreated lignocellulose in existing fermentation systems. This type of biomass can also be subjected to a wide range of chemical and physical analyses by deploying monomeric sugars, organic acids, phenols, lignin or minerals. This allows us to see if a given form of biomass is suitable for a specific application based on the analysed components.