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Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number BBS/E/W/10963A01D
Title Optimising energy output and biorefining
Status Completed
Energy Categories Renewable Energy Sources(Bio-Energy, Other bio-energy) 20%;
Renewable Energy Sources(Bio-Energy, Applications for heat and electricity) 40%;
Renewable Energy Sources(Bio-Energy, Production of other biomass-derived fuels (incl. Production from wastes)) 20%;
Renewable Energy Sources(Bio-Energy, Production of transport biofuels (incl. Production from wastes)) 20%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields BIOLOGICAL AND AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES (Biological Sciences) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr IS (Iain ) Donnison
No email address given
Aberystwyth University
Award Type Institute Project
Funding Source BBSRC
Start Date 01 April 2012
End Date 31 March 2017
Duration 60 months
Total Grant Value £760,197
Industrial Sectors Transport Systems and Vehicles
Region Wales
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr IS (Iain ) Donnison , IBERS, Aberystwyth University (99.997%)
  Other Investigator Dr J Gallagher , IBERS, Aberystwyth University (0.001%)
Dr A (Ana ) Winters , IBERS, Aberystwyth University (0.001%)
Dr I (Ifat ) Parveen , IBERS, Aberystwyth University (0.001%)
Web Site
Objectives Objectives not supplied
Abstract The aim of the project is to characterise Miscanthus and other energy grasses for processability, digestibility, fermentability and potential for recovery of high value co-products. An important aspect of the studies will be the harvesting and stabilisation of biomass. Stabilised biomass will be screened for saccharification potential prior to fermentation to biofuels and platform chemicals. A mapping family will be identified and used to map QTL for biorefining traits. We will investigate the practicality of harvesting Miscanthus biannually, assess the fermentability of green material, and identify co-products with commercial potential while observing the effects on yield and long-term sustainability. Work on the biotransformation of feedstocks will provide a more coherent picture of how grass composition and morphology affect digestion and fermentation. An alternative strategy to the exploitation of natural variation is to transgenically manipulate grasses to facilitate downstream processing. To do this we will exploit post harvest/ senescence promoters and cellular targeting sequences to express genes with industrial biotechnology potential. We will also develop a toolkit involving the synthesis of enzyme substrates linked with chromophores for the rapid screening of cell-wall degrading enzymes in diverse germplasm and manipulated plants. To maximise the commercial value of energy grasses, high value compounds will be identified (e.g. using LC-ESI-MS/MS and 2D NMR) with potential applications in the pharmaceutical, cosmetic, agricultural, food and non-food industries.
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 14/04/14