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Biorefinery and Biomaterials: a Master for the Green Economy

Published on May 15, 2020
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Call for Applications

The Master Biorefinery and Biomaterials is aimed at students who are keen to work in industries that use biomass to produce chemicals, energy and biomaterials. Application deadline extended to June 15, 2020.

Biorefinery and Biomaterials: a Master for the Green Economy

Biorefinery and Biomaterials: a Master for the Green Economy

Grenoble INP-Pagora offers a Master in Biorefinery and Biomaterials: this one-year course (from September to July) is given in English. The conversion of biomass into energy, chemicals and polymers is an important component of the green economy. It contributes to the drastic reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the intensification of recycling and the minimisation of waste.

Bioenergy, biofuels, bioproducts and biopolymers:
today, these are realities

However, the rate at which their production is growing must be stepped up considerably if their contribution is to meet the challenges we face. This will require new skills to become available. Biorefinery is the process that enables plant resources to be converted into energy and chemicals. While similar in definition to a traditional refinery, the wide variety of materials and the complexity of their chemical composition make biorefinery a highly specific engineering process. The chemistry involved also differs from that of petrochemistry:
  • plant constituents are structured with three essential atoms (C, H, O) – oil has just two (C, H) – which generates greater complexity;
  • these structures are complex organic architectures that can be valorised as is. This can be an advantage for the production of products and materials that offer new properties.

A special focus is also placed on the cellulose industry

Indeed, it currently displays the greatest potential when it comes to mass producing bioproducts – including fibres, fibrils and cellulose micro and nanocrystals – not to mention sugars, carbohydrates in general and lignin, which are immediately available for valorisation. Knowledge also relates to the heat processing of biomass (roasting, pyrolysis, gasification) and the synthesis of new polymers and composites for the design of biomaterials with specific properties: new functions, biodegradability, food contact, etc.

The Grenoble INP-Pagora' Master Biorefinery and Biomaterials
covers the entire sector

This sector ranges from the supply of lignocellulosic biomass – mainly wood – to the production of chemicals, biofuels, synthons and biopolymers, replacing fossil products. Emphasis is placed on knowledge of the constituents of lignocellulosic biomass (lignin, hemicelluloses, celluloses, extractable products) and their chemistry as well as chemical, physico-chemical and biotechnological processes enabling them to be separated, purified or modified in order to their recovery (biorefinery).
This multidisciplinary course features modules on chemistry, biology, enzyme catalysis, fermentation, process engineering, chemical and biotechnical engineering, polymerisation and material strength. It also broaches production costs, the sector’s economic aspects and its environmental impact. The training is in line with the topics of the Tec21 Laboratory of Excellence, the Carnot Polynat Institute, CDP Glyco@Alps, the Grenoble Alpes University IDEX, and the Axelera Chemistry-Environment innovation cluster.

New skills widely appreciated

The skills that students acquire in the fields of chemistry, processes, biotechnology and polymerisation, but also in their application to plant biomass valorisation, are in high demand in various industrial sectors: cellulose, textiles, cosmetics, detergents, paints, plastics, packaging, energy, food, pharmaceuticals, etc.

Depending on the Covid 19 situation, the courses might be provided online. Further information will be given later on.

Informations - Application

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Date of update May 15, 2020

Université Grenoble Alpes