Novel high-performance polymers from lignocellulosic feedstock
This project develops new sustainable platform for novel bio-derived polymers used in applications with strict demands for properties (e.g. automotive industry, coatings, packaging, etc). The new platform is based on a citric acid, a platform chemical widely produced from biomass. As a raw material for citric acid, a stream of wood sugars, which very recently became available and is derived from low quality wood residues, is used. Importantly, the environmental benefits and possible adverse effects are fully analyzed throughout the project, enabling the optimization from the sustainability point of view. The environmental sustainability profile of the bio-based polymers studied will be benchmarked against the conventional fossil-derived plastics.
The project is carried out 01.09.2020-31.03.2024. The project budget is 710504 euros, which is divided between three partners:
University of Tartu - 288982,75 euros, https://www.ut.ee/en;
Norwegian University of Science and Technology NTNU - 238347,50 euros, https://www.ntnu.edu/;
Vilnius University - 183173,75 euros, https://www.vu.lt/en/.
The project has been funded by The European Economic Area (EEA) and Norwegian Financial Mechanisms (grant no EMP426).
The purpose of the financial mechanisms is to reduce social and economic inequalities in the European Union and the European Economic Area and to strengthen bilateral relations between Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein and the beneficiary countries. The projects invest in competitiveness, cyber protection, environment and climate, health, science, education, social protection, cultural heritage and civil society, which will improve the socio-economic situation in different regions of Estonia and create better conditions for economic growth. In addition to the financial contribution, it is possible to exchange experiences and obtain information with other countries, which enables Estonia to better plan its economic activities in general.
The general objectives of the EEA and Norway Grants are:
- to reduce economic and social inequalities in the European Economic Area;
- strengthen bilateral relations between the donor and recipient countries.
Estonia's main interest in using subsidies is primarily in areas that would increase our competitiveness: innovation, social inclusion, ICT, SMEs, labor market competitiveness, low CO2 economy (renewable energy, energy and resource efficiency). More information on The European Economic Area (EEA) and Norwegian Financial Mechanisms website: https://eeagrants.org/.
Lauri Vares, Associate Professor of Organic Chemistry (lauri.vares [ät] ut.ee), University of Tartu, Institute of Technology