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Bioenergy and Biofuels


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The Bioenergy and Biofuels Area is made up of a multidisciplinary research team that develops advanced solutions for fuels and energy systems based on biomass, new materials and improved energy efficiency in the industry through the intensification of processes.

Its aims are to provide quality research and development, and to offer a rich and creative environment that delivers opportunities to private businesses for innovation and technology transfer.

The main lines of research focus on modern concepts in biorefining, and can be summarised by its microalgae and second generation raw materials lines for the production of biofuels and the added value of chemical products, hydrolyte processing for the pre-treatment of biomass and solid fuels, fractionation, and the conversion into cellulosic ethanol and the chemical heat conversion of the biomass and solid fuels for energy, second generation biofuels and the production of hydrogen.



Thesis

  • Bio-refinery, combustion and thermochemical conversion:

    We focus our research in the development of several processes and thermo chemical conversion of biomass and wastes to produce energy, these processes includes combustion, and its applied research for co-generation and heat production equipment design improvement, in order to increase the acknowledgment about these technologies that allow the industry to increase generation and economics efficiency. Gasification that allow to produce gas fuels and syn-gas, pyrolysis to produce liquid fuel precursors (biofuels) and subcritical and supercritical water catalytic conversion (SCW) alows to produce energy products like syn-gas with high levels of hydrogen and methane from high moisture content biomass, and other high organics concentration water soluble material. These two technologies could be improved to maximize the hydrogen gas production, as a decentralized energy generation vector used in fuel cells.


  • Feedstocks o New raw materials and fractionation.

    Our research work is focused on identify, use and promote the generation of new raw materials from photosynthesis to transform it into energy valuable products and other advanced chemical products, by efficient bio cultivation specially microalgae in our own bio-reactors, that allow to us to investigate its growing processes and interesting parameters that take influence on this growing and its composition.

    The fractionation is based on bio refinery processes basically on lignocellulosic material to obtain cellulose, lignin and hemicelluloses, as a main polymers in the vegetal world and the most present in the world. Each fraction could be processed by several chemical treatments to obtain for example: fuels, feed, medical products, adhesives and others.


  • Transversal technologies:
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    These technologies are some of the basic technologies to perform complete research on the main processes in the area, without these acknowledgements the area processes couldn’t obtain useful results. These technologies are the polymeric and ceramic membrane technology, catalysis, fluid-dynamics simulation based on ANSYS software package, Life cycle assessment (LCA), simulation and virtual instruments for processes monitoring and DAQ based on MatLab software package.


  • MARECORE. Biorefinatge de microalgues: optimització dels passos d’explotació i recuperació de lípids.

  • CUPASEFCA. Cultiu i explotació de microalgues en sistemes semitancats amb fertilització carbònica prop d’una refineria Repsol ubicada a Tarragona.

  • PIOPE. Cultiu de microalgues per a la producció de productes energètics.

  • SYN3. Combustibles líquids sintètics mitjançant la gasificació de SRF i de biomassa: sistemes catalítics nous per a síntesi Fischer-Tropsch.

  • ALTAR. Avaluació d’una mostra de quitrà per a ús energètic.

  • KIC-UPGRAD. Potenciació dels aliments biogènics de baix rang per a la producció d’energia i calor mitjançant la combustió i la gasificació.

  • ATEDECE. Assistència tècnica a la determinació elemental de residus pilot.

  • TRADEBE-01. Estat actual de tecnologies industrials, de demostració i pilot disponibles per produir biocombustibles líquids a partir de materials residuals.
  • ECO2CO2 biorefineria química fina de CO2 foto-reducció catalítica.

  • HERMS02 Estudi de la producció de lípids de cultius mixtes de microalgues.

  • EVALE Avaluació de la mostra de residus d'hidrocarburs per a usos energètics.

  • TorrBioGas: Estudi de viabilitat de la gasificació de la biomassa per a usos energètics.

  • CREIX Estudi de creixement de micro lgues