Current Projects and Priorities

The NSERC Industrial Chair in Thermochemical Conversion of Biomass and Waste to Bioindustrial Resources spans the continuum from feedstock through conversion to application/uptake, and then circling back to feedstock as is the case in a circular economy.  Feedstocks vary from (as examples): agricultural residues and wastes, to forestry residues and wastes, construction woody waste, compost, food scraps, greenhouse residues as well as mixed and contaminated plastics and municipal solid wastes.  Conversion processes include fast and slow pyrolysis, combustion and gasification.  Liquids (chemicals including acetic acids, phenolics and monomers; diesel-like fuel and fuel oil), solids (bio-chars, carbon black) and gases are produced with a wide range of potential applications. This program has a focus on industrially-relevant research where standardized protocols are being developed with the aim of providing economically viable solutions that contribute to a sustainable, circular economy. See The Circle: Feedstock, Conversion, Uptake & Back

Current Projects Include:

  • comparative studies on pyrolytic technologies (Project #1)
  • fundamental characterization of biochars (Project #2)
  • engineering biochar for various applications (Project #3)
  • slow pyrolysis of bark and forestry residues (Project #4)
  • anaerobic digestion of aqueous pyrolysis condensate (Project #5)
  • characterization of aqueous pyrolysis condensate and valorization of its acetic acid (Project #6)
  • synergies between biochar and compost (Project #7)
  • pyrolysis of polyethylene-lined waste (Project #8)
  • pyrolysis of plastic bailing materials (Project #9)
  • slow pyrolysis of vomitoxin corn (Project #10)
  • experimental validation of a gasifier for electrical power generation and ash applications (Project #11)
  • technical & economic feasibility evaluation: large-scale thermal converter for mixed plastic waste (Project #12)
  • slow pyrolysis and hydrothermal carbonization of digestate (Project #13)
  • conversion of Phragmites Australis for the production of renewable chemicals and adsorbents (Project #14)