Bioconversion is the game of today!

 
The biorefinery technology is fractionation technique, which means that the raw material is divided into its natural parts. Lignocellulose is split into cellulose and lignin.
Cellulose is then broken into different sugars.
Fractionating of biomass gives us carbon-neutral bioethanol mainly as biofuel use, and lignin as raw material for the industry. The cellulosic technology is in place and ready for commercialization.

Products

When talking about modern bioconversion, we usually call the bioethanol end product as 2-generation bioethanol, also called as cellulosic bioethanol. It is produced by transforming non-edible biomass, like wood, to valuable end products.

The other main product from the fractionating process is lignin. Lignin is the substance, which binds together the cellulosic fibres in the wood.

One can say that lignin is the ‘glue’ in the tree, which binds together the cellulosic fibres in the wood.

Sustainability

“From macro-economical point of view, the most effective way to fight CO2 emissions, is to invest in 2-generation biofuel production and increase its usage. Furthermore, investing in 2-generation biofuels has no side effects on vehicle fleet or fuel distribution system.”

The use of biomass as a raw material has many advantages. First of all, when used to produce bioethanol, it provides a CO2 reduction of over 80 % compared with conventional ethanol, produced from edible sugars or starch. Second, as important, is that using biomass as raw material, one need not to consider ‘food versus fuel’ objection. The conflict between food and biofuel is non-existing.
We should use field and forest biomass, instead of agricultural land and crop, to produce modern biofuel and lignin for the traffic and industry.

Timo Saini

Cellulosic raw materials are found in in large quantities all around the world.
In Finland the natural solution is wood, our ‘green gold.’