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Bio4Energy Feedstock

  • Age and weather effects on between and within ring variations of number, width and coarseness of tracheids and radial growth of young Norway spruce

    Lundqvist S-O, Seifert S, Grahn Th, Olsson L, García-Gil MR, Karlsson B, Seifert Th. 2018. Age and weather effects on between and within ring variations of number, width and coarseness of tracheids and radial growth of young Norway spruce. Eur J Forest Res, pp 1-25. August
  • Bio4Energy Feedstock

    feedstock_600Forest growth has been seen as a northern resource as it is plentiful in several Scandinavian countries. On the Bio4Energy platform for feedstock research, scientists attempt to understand what trees are made of and, where appropriate, to modify their characteristics so that trees can be designed for use for a specific purpose, such as for making biofuels, "green" chemicals or bio-based materials.Photo used with permission.
    The research in Bio4Energy Feedstock aims at:
    • Increasing the quantity and quality of plant biomass sourced from forests and;
    • Developing efficient processes for conversion of biomass to valuable products and energy.

    Platform leader is Senior Lecturer This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., taking over from Professor This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 1 January 2016. Both researchers are affiliated with the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) and carry out much of their work at the Umeå Plant Science Centre (UPSC). 

    Said Niittylä of the platform Bio4Energy Feedstock: "The overarching goal of the feedstock platform is to increase biomass accumulation per hectare and make the biomass better suited for biorefinery processing. The Bio4Energy Feedstock platform investigates the molecular controls of quantity and quality of wood, the environmental and management practices that govern these, develops analytical tools for wood characterisation and carries out field trials with transgenic trees. We can provide expertise in cellular and organismal growth control, biomass allocation to harvestable parts of the trees, characterisation of wood and fiber properties, quantitative tree genetics and establishment of tree plantations".

    The following researchers are part of Bio4Energy Feedstock:

    UmU/UPSC, Umeå, Sweden Phone Office location
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    UmU KBC/UPSC: KB4C7

    - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. +46 90 786 9604 UmU KBC/UPSC
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    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. +46 90 786 9693 UmU KBC/UPSC: B3-54-43
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    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. +46 72 203 3209 Affiliation with Stockhom University
    since November 2015
         
    SLU/UPSC, Umeå, Sweden    
    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. +46 90 786 8434 UmU KBC/UPSC: KB5C5
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    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. +46 90-786 8367 UmU KBC/UPSC: B6-42-45
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    - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   UmU KBC/UPSC: B6-38-45
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    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. +46 90 786 8435 UmU KBC/UPSC KB5C7
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    - Jay Prakash Maurya    
    - Pal Csaba Misckolczi    
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    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.    SLU Alnarp (Southern Sweden)
    Research Institutes of Sweden
    RISE Bioeconomy/Biorefining
    & Biobased Materials
    (R&D consultants)
      Drottning Kristinas Rd 61, Stockholm, SE
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  • Bio4Energy-funded Projects Promoting Excellence, Collaboration Focus of Event

    Audience 210518 2 420Twice a year, the Bio4Energy scientists meet as a group to exchange ideas. Photo by Bio4Energy (archives).Bio4Energy offers its scientists the possibility to apply for so-called Strategic Funds to finance projects on new lines of research that are likely to advance the frontiers of science. The projects also have to promote collaboration between researchers from different disciplines or organisations; including universities, institutes and industry tied to the research environment.

    Today’s Bio4Energy Researchers’ Meeting, a biannual event for the research programme within the environment, learnt about projects enabled by those funds.

  • Biosensorer övervakar växters välmående i realtid

    Participation by Bio4Energy researchers: Biosensorer övervakar växters välmående i realtid, Lindköpings universitet
  • Cell Wall Acetylation in Hybrid Aspen Affects Field Performance, Foliar Phenolic Composition and Resistance to Biological Stress Factors in a Construct-Dependent Fashion

    Derba-Maceluch M, Amini F, Donev EN, Pawar Prashant M-A, Michaud L, Johansson U, Albrectsen BR. Mellerowicz EJ. 2020. Cell Wall Acetylation in Hybrid Aspen Affects Field Performance, Foliar Phenolic Composition and Resistance to Biological Stress Factors in a Construct-Dependent Fashion. Frontiers in Plant Science, 11, 651. 25 May
  • Diurnal in vivo xylem sap glucose and sucrose monitoring using implantable organic electrochemical transistor sensors

    Diacci Ch, Abedi T, Lee JW, Gabrielsson EO, Berggren M, Simon DT, Niittylä T, Stavrinidou E. 2021. Diurnal in vivo xylem sap glucose and sucrose monitoring using implantable organic electrochemical transistor sensors. iScience 24 (1) 101966. 22 January
  • Field Trials Confirm Greater Bioethanol Yields Possible from Genetically Modified Trees

    EwaMellerowicz field Credit E MellerowiczEwa Mellerowicz surveys a hybrid aspen plant at an early stage of field trials in Sweden. Photo by courtesy of Ewa Mellerowicz.Scientists in Bio4Energy and academic colleagues have shown in field trials that aspen trees that were genetically modified (GM) to render more input material for making biofuel from wood than their wildtype counterparts, are robust enough to grow at a real-life plantation. The researchers also found that they could extract more such glucose sugar, more easily, from the GM trees, compared with the wildtype.

    This is the first time such results have been obtained outside of a research laboratory—that is outside of a greenhouse—according to research leader This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) at Umeå, Sweden.

    “The glucose yield was 25 to 30 percent higher in the modified trees compared with the wildtype trees. This is a result obtained without pre-treatment so it means that [the modification helped to] decrease the recalcitrance of the wood and made the raw material easier to transform into sugar”, Mellerowicz told Bio4Energy Communications.

    Mellerowicz is one of the principal investigators on the research and development platform Bio4Energy Feedstock and has been in charge of verifying laboratory results in experimental plantations, or field trials, since the start in 2014 at Våxtorp, Sweden. The scientists planted and monitored more than 600 GM hybrid aspen trees, but which had to be harvested on the early side because of the impact of severe drought conditions in the summer of 2018, when all of Europe experienced heat waves.

  • Genetic control of tracheid properties in Norway spruce wood

    Baison J, Zhou L, Forsberg N. et al. 2020. Genetic control of tracheid properties in Norway spruce woodSci Rep 10, 18089
  • Genetic control of tracheid properties in Norway spruce wood

    Baison J, Zhou L, Forsberg N. et al. 2020. Genetic control of tracheid properties in Norway spruce woodSci Rep 10, 18089
  • Hybrid Aspen Expressing a Carbohydrate Esterase Family 5 Acetyl Xylan Esterase Under Control of a Wood-Specific Promoter Shows Improved Saccharification

    Wang Z, Pawar PM-A, Derba-Maceluch M, Hedenström M, Chong S-L, Tenkanen M, Jönsson LJ. 2020. Mellerowicz EJ. 2020. Hybrid Aspen Expressing a Carbohydrate Esterase Family 5 Acetyl Xylan Esterase Under Control of a Wood-Specific Promoter Shows Improved Saccharification. Frontiers in Plant Science, (11) 380
  • New Measurement Method for Bettering Plant Growth Is Here: Bio4Energy Scientists in EU Project

    Sensors TotteNiittyla 040321Newly created electrochemical sensors will help researchers understand sugar transport in plants, to improve agricultural and biorefinery raw material production. Pictures published with permission.A new system to monitor sugar levels in plants or trees in real time, for the purpose of optimising growth conditions, in the face of climate change. Seems futuristic? It is here, in any case.

    Bio4Energy scientists with expertise in feedstock research teamed up with partners in Sweden, Italy, France, Greece to create cheap-to-produce sensors that gauge the levels and whereabouts of sugar in plants, as they vary over the day and with changing climatic conditions.

    The idea is to have a versatile way for researchers to implant small electrochemical sensors directly in the plant to monitor the fluctuations in the way in which the sugar is transported stored in the plant. The results are directly visible.

    With this kind of research tool, it will be possible to gauge optimal conditions for growth for various types of plants, for instance which kind of soil, soil moisture and temperature conditions should be preferred.

  • Progress by Bio4Energy's R&D Platforms Unveiled

    Bio4Energy's researchers and students met online to share the latest progress by the seven Bio4Energy Research and Development (R&D) Platforms, as the 17 June Spring 2020 Bio4Energy Researchers' Meeting.*

    B4E-Res_AnnaStrom
    B4E-students_AnnaStrom
    B4EstudRES_150519
    ForestPositive_CreditAnnaStrom
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    Until further notice, the Autumn 2020 Bio4Energy Researchers' Meeting will be held 13-14 October, at Skellefteå, Sweden.

    *The pictures used are from archives, in memory of the Spring 2019 Bio4Energy Researchers' Meeting. There and then, our students made a large contribution and want to encourage them to keep up the good work.

  • 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.

  • Prospects for Rollout of Poplar Plantations Investigated as Means to Increase Biofuel Production in Sweden

    Collage Populus plantation Bio4Energy2020 400Populus plants at the researchers' field trial plantation in southern Sweden. Photos by courtesy of Henrik Böhlenius.Researchers in Bio4Energy and a partner will investigate the potential for a rollout in Sweden of plantations of fast-growing poplar trees—Populus trichocarpa in Latin—as a means to increase biomass productionfor making renewable automotive fuels from wood and woody residue.

    While there is a great body of scientific literature to describe the trees and their properties in themselves, information on the economics and technical feasibility of doing so at a large scale is relatively scant, according to project leader This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., scientist at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU). Contrary to most of the other Bio4Energy scientists who are based in the Swedish north, he is in the southernmost part of the country, at Alnarp.

    “We see a great potential for [rollout of] this type of plantation, along the lines of one million hectares that could be added to the current domestic production of bioenergy”, Böhlenius said.

    Sweden would benefit from making more advanced biofuels—renewable fuels that do not compete with food production and meet high quality standards in terms of their greenhouse gas footprint—at an affordable cost.

    Land is available, to believe official statistics. Roughly 400,000 hectares of agricultural land could be planted with poplar without jeopardsing food production. Another one-to-two million hectare of spruce tree plantations, sitting on former agricultural land, could be used to plant poplar or other fast-growing tree species. 

  • Towards Genomic-based Breeding in Norway Spruce

    Zhou L. 2020. Towards Genomic-based Breeding in Norway Spruce (PhD dissertation). Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Umeå, Sweden. Online 8 August