umu logotyp ENLTU eng blue slu logo rgb web RISE logo

New Programme Managers for Bio4Energy

ChB LJ EW Bio4Energy C MattiasPetterssonBio4Energy's new management team (from left): Christoffer Boman, Leif Jönsson and Elisabeth Wetterlund. Photo by Mattias Pettersson.Bio4Energy has new programme managers. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. of Umeå University (UmU) will be acting programme managers and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Luleå University of Technology (LTU) their deputy.

The appointment comes at a pivotal time, since Bio4Energy is coming up to the close of its second programme period in 2020. Its funder, the Swedish government, is expected to decide this year whether to renew the funding for Sweden’s Strategic Research Environments (SRE), of which Bio4Energy is one.

It will be up to the newly appointed threesome to lead Bio4Energy into the future.

“We hope that wise decisions will be made and that the SRE initiative is allowed to continue. We will have to await the arrival of political decision to know more about this”, said Jönsson, professor of Chemistry at UmU.

Read more: New Programme Managers for Bio4Energy

Project to Develop Sustainability Metrics for Innovative Business on IVA 100 List


SRI SDGs 1 400pxThis team of system analysis researchers at Bio4Energy made the IVA 100 List for Sustainable Competitiveness 2020, with their scheme Developing Sustainability Metrics for Innovative Business. From left: Kavitha Shanmugam, Mats Tysklind, Krishna Upadhyayula and Dalia Abdelfattah.Bio4Energy’s work on developing sustainability metrics for innovative business has been acknowledged by the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA), on its 100 List for Sustainable Competitiveness 2020.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and his team at Umeå University (UmU), specialised in system analysis research, developed the sustainability metric scheme to assist investors wanting to take so called game-changing academic innovations to commercialisation and to market roll out.

The scheme entails four steps, in which the system analysis researchers start by examining an innovation’s environmental and competitiveness credentials using life-cycle assessment and cost-benefit analysis and end by offering easy-to-use indicators, based on which investors can make their decision to invest or not.

The IVA 100 List for Sustainable Competitiveness 2020 highlights academic research that “has a bearing on sustainability, in technical or economics sciences, which can create value for business or society in terms of knowledge, processes, products or business development”.

“We published a [scientific article] in 2018 that talks about how to make the sustainable decision-making process easy—or rather the financial decision-making process easy—for investors, venture capitalists and industries, to bring right and sustainable technologies to the market”, said Upadhyayula, who is an assistant professor at UmU.

Read more: Project to Develop Sustainability Metrics for Innovative Business on IVA 100 List

System for Cleanup of Toxic Chemicals to Be Tested in Sweden – Video

StinaJansson June2019Stina Jansson, platform leader at Bio4Energy, at a conference in June 2019.For the first time in Sweden, researchers will test a system designed to remove polluted sediment at the bottom of lakes and waterways of toxic chemicals, developed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) of the U.S. government. The Sorbent Polymer Extraction and Remediation System (SPEARS), has been used with good results in Canada and the U.S.A. and will be tested in Sweden by a research team at Umeå University (UmU) led by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., according to a UmU press release.

Whereas in the U.S. and Canada the use of SPEARS had been limited to the cleanup of well-known organic environmental toxins such as polycyclic chlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), Jansson said, the Swedish scientists would also attempt to use it to clean up a range of other toxic compounds and metals.

Until their ban in manufacture in the late 1970s, PCB chemicals were widely used and notably in paints and adhesives. Even though their manufacture stopped, said NASA Kennedy Space Center scientist Jackie Quinn, in a promotional video for SPEARS, PCBs are found ubiquitously throughout the globe. Classified as persistent organic pollutants, they are known to induce cancer.

The UmU scientists, however, will test not only whether SPEARS can be made to clean sediments in Sweden of PCBs and PAHs, but also whether it can remove polychlorinated dibenzodioxins and dibenzofurans, as well as metal-based substances or metals such as arsenic, methyl mercury or tributyltin.

Read more: System for Cleanup of Toxic Chemicals to Be Tested in Sweden – Video

Decisive Step Taken in Project to Bring Sustainable Bioenergy to Sub-Saharan Africa

Fueling the reactor AnnaStrom2020Robert Lindgren of Bio4Energy fuels the pilot reactor for biomass gasification. Photo by Bio4Energy© 2020.Scientists in Bio4Energy have taken a decisive step in a multi-actor project to provide sustainable bioenergy solutions for people in some of the least well-off countries in Africa, by designing a pilot installation that will produce energy-rich gas and biochar from pre-treated biomass residues.

The construction of the two-metre tall pilot—which is still a miniature version of what a future commercial-scale gasification reactor would look like—is a collaboration between Bio4Energy researchers at Umeå University and at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences at Umeå, Sweden.

“The reactor makes us able to close the loop, or construct a total system, of upgrading and using residual biomass products from the agricultural industry”, said project leader This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. of the research and development platform Bio4Energy Environment and Nutrient Recycling.

Boman and his colleague and former student This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., of the same R&D platform, have been championing the project since the outset in 2012, and with funding granted in 2015.

Read more: Decisive Step Taken in Project to Bring Sustainable Bioenergy to Sub-Saharan Africa

Season's Greetings from Bio4Energy

To all the Bio4Energy researchers, the Bio4Energy Industrial Network, Bio4Energy Advisory Board, the Steering Group and Board, as well as all our followers, funders, colleagues in the sector and friends everywhere:

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

MerryChristmas Bio4Energy2019A northern Sweden Christmas tree, also known as Norway spruce. Merry Christmas. Photo by Bio4Energy© 2019.

Thank you for all the hard work in 2019! Next year will be pivotal for Bio4Energy as we try win funding for a third programme period. Please keep spreading the message about the work we do to deliver world-class tools and methods for conducting sustainable and efficient biorefinery based on wood or organic waste: Advanced biofuels, "green" chemicals and smart bio-based materials.

From Seed to Advanced Fuels and Chemicals

Bio4Energy Scientists Acknowledged for Work on Biomass Inhibitors in Wood Biorefinery

Leif Carlos Award 2Leif Jönsson and Carlos Martín Medina show the plaque and diploma their research group were awarded for the great interest shown by the research community in their scientific article on biomass inhibitors in wood biorefinery. Photo by InYung Sunwoo.

A team of Bio4Energy scientists and partners have been acknowledged at a prestigious conference for their work to reduce the effect of toxic substances in the pre-treatment of biomass destined for conversion to advanced biofuels made using yeast or microbes to turn wood polymers into fuels.

Their review article, Pre-treatment of lignocellulose: Formation of inhibitory by-products and strategies for minimising their effects, published in the Bioresource Technology scientific journal, has not stopped receiving acclaim since its publication in 2016. At the time of New Horizons in Biotechnology Conference (NHBT-2019)—a conference given in India in November this year—results from the article had been mentioned 560 times in other scientific articles by researchers worldwide.

This made the editorial board of Bioresource Technology decide to award the researcher with a diploma and a plaque for their Highly Downloaded Article 2019.

“It is the most downloaded article steadily during the last two years and the most cited article of Bioresource Technology since 2016”, said This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. of Umeå University and a PI on the platform Bio4Energy Biopolymers and Biochemical Conversion Technologies.

“I think it helped that the review covered all three areas of pre-treatment, formation of inhibitors and strategies [designed to lessen] their effects”, Martín added, “and that the discussion included some new important inhibitors in terms of their effects. That is, compounds that form in small amounts, but which are very strong inhibitors”.

Read more: Bio4Energy Scientists Acknowledged for Work on Biomass Inhibitors in Wood Biorefinery

Projects Granted Bio4Energy Researchers on Integrated Climate Assessment, Membranes for Desalination, Plant Cell Biology

Photo by AnnaStrom2019x400A patch of mainly coniferous forest in northern Sweden, in mid-October 2019. Photo by Anna Strom© 2019.Next year, Bio4Energy scientists will kick off multiannual projects, respectively, on integrated climate assessment of using woody biomass, production of membranes to desalinate sea water and on investigating the “unknowns” of plant cell biology for the ultimate purpose of increasing biomass production. The Swedish Research Council Formas (Formas) or the Swedish Research Council (VR) granted the projects in their respective annual rounds of funding.

What uses of biomass should be preferred to minimise greenhouse gas emissions?

The first project is broad in scope and will require the researchers to use a number of system analysis models. The aim is to find out, starting from sustainably managed forests in Sweden, which type of use of the harvested biomass will maximise efficiency, in terms of using bioenergy instead of fossil fuels for the purpose of minimising greenhouse gas emissions. The findings will serve to guide decision-makers in their attempt to understand what mix of technologies to favour and, consequently, what support measures to propose.

“Understanding the climate impact of different forest biomass paths is paramount for the implementation of appropriate policy measures. The purpose of the project is to improve the effectiveness of reaching the climate targets by advancing our understanding of climate impacts of using biomass, especially trade-offs and interactions of climate effects between the biophysical and economical systems”, says the project grant application.

Read more: Projects Granted Bio4Energy Researchers on Integrated Climate Assessment, Membranes for...

Introducing System Analysis to Bio-based Research, Development

Bio4Energy is on a mission to introduce system analysis to its technology-based research and development (R&D). In 2016, Bio4Energy created a new R&D platform entirely dedicated to the subject. It is called Bio4Energy System Analysis and Bioeconomy.

So what is system analysis and how can we use it? To know more, look at the presentations from the last Bio4Energy Researchers' Meeting, at which about 50 of the Bio4Energy members–scientists and students–met to learn more and exchange ideas on how to check the feasibility of introducing new technology innovations to the market.

Bio4Energy-Feedstock
Bio4EnergySystemAnalysis
BioPolChem_Bio4Energy
Carlos_Dan_Bio4Energy
ElisabethWe_Bio4Energy
RobLundmark_Bio4Energy
WoodPre-proc_Bio4Energy
1/7 
start stop bwd fwd


Thank you Bio4Energy researchers, young and old, for your contribution!
22 October 2019 at Skellefteå, Sweden

Attachments:
Download this file (Bioeconomy-and-Market-Impacts_Robert Lundmark.pdf)Assessment of New Technology and Forest Management Systems[Robert Lundmark, Bio4Energy System Analysis and Bioeconomy]1501 kB
Download this file (Bioenergy-production-from-Swedish-forests_Tommy-Lungren.pdf)Efficient and Sustainable Bioenergy Production[Tommy Lundgren, Bio4Energy System Analysis and Bioeconomy]746 kB
Download this file (Drop-in-Fuels-via-Thermal-Conversion_Elisabeth-Wetterlund.pdf)Combining Increased Pulp Capacity with Biofuel Production[Elisabeth Wetterlund, Bio4Energy System Analysis and Bioeconomy]612 kB
Download this file (LCA-in-Bioeconomy_Krishna-Upadhyayula.pdf)Life-cycle Assessment in Bioeconomy[Krishna Upadhyayula, Bio4Energy System Analysis and Bioeconomy]1179 kB

Bio4Energy on Twitter