Biorefinery: From Biomass to Building Blocks of Biobased Products
Just as the petrochemical refinery is a crucial part of the fossil-based industry,so is the biorefinery for the biobased industry. In a biorefinery, a complex biobased feedstock is separated and processed in such a way to maximize sustainability and application opportunities. Upon completing this course, you will understand the tools and techniques needed to efficiently disentangle, separate and convert different biomass based feedstocks into simpler (functional) components.
First, you'll learn about available techniques and processes for biomass activation, disentanglement and separation. Next, you'll explore how to design a biorefinery taking into account feedstock and sustainable energy use and dive into:
- Mass and energy balances
- Design of biorefinery process units to obtain multiple products from one type of biomass
- How to recover energy and resources in the biorefinery system
- Evaluation of the designed system with respect to sustainability and economic criteria
- Evaluation of criteria for successful implementation
Upcoming start dates
6 June, 2023
- Self-paced Online
Who should attend?
BSc in technology, engineering (and applied) sciences. You should have at least BSc level knowledge on courses and topics such as chemistry, mathematics and process engineering.
Introduction to Biorefinery
In this introduction module you will get acquainted with the general concepts of biorefineries. Use our diagnostic test to check if you need to get additional information before starting with the next module.
Biomass and Biorefineries
Let's take a closer look at biomass, what components can be found in them and how to get these out as value-adding compounds. This module focuses on the refinery of naturally occurring compounds, such as oils and proteins.
In this module we zoom in on fermentation as a bioconversion method. Based on the case of the acetone-butanol-ethanol fermentation by Clostridium species, we will illustrate the use of fermentation in biorefineries.
This module highlights several methods used to separate fermentation broth into different streams. You will learn how to effectively get your product out!
Process Evaluation and Improvements
Let's zoom out and look at the biorefinery process as whole. Find out how you can improve a process with respect to energy use, side-streams recovery, and economics.
Case Study: Process Design
You will learn to use the flow-sheeting software SuperPro Designer to design a bio-butanol process. You will look at the different steps needed to convert and separate the product. In addition you will look at a biorefinery process and propose relevant improvements using the knowledge acquired in the course.
Course delivery details
This course is offered through Wageningen University & Research, a partner institute of EdX.
12-20 hours per week
- Verified Track -$149
- Audit Track - Free
Certification / Credits
What you'll learn
After this course you will be able to:
- Choose proper (chemical) pre-treatment and conversions to arrive at the required products
- Conceptually design a biorefinery process
- Critically evaluate a process design with respect to energy and feedstock efficiency
- Compare that design with fossil-based processes
- Know how to activate/disentangle and separate biobased feedstocks
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