• Bioethanol
    from Biomass
    Bioprocess Development

Biobased Chemicals - Background

Rationale for Biobased Chemicals Production

The production of chemicals from biomass, also known as bio-based chemicals, plays a critical role in creating a sustainable and environmentally friendly future, particularly as the world strives to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Some of the advantages of biobased chemicals are listed below:
  • Climate Change Mitigation - Unlike fossil fuels, bio-based chemicals are made from plant materials that recently absorbed carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
  • Security of Supply - Fossil fuel supply often is reliant on geopolitically unstable regions. Developing domestic sources of biomass and the infrastructure to convert such feedstocks to chemicals, can help improve national chemicals security.
  • Sustainable Development - Biomass can often be produced and processed locally, promoting rural development and creating jobs in agriculture, industry, and research.
  • Waste Management - Biomass for bio-based chemicals can come from waste residues from agriculture, forestry, or even municipal waste. Using these waste streams for biobased chemicals can help solve waste disposal problems.
  • Biodegradability - Many bio-based chemicals and the products made from them are biodegradable, avoiding environmental pollution associated with many fossil-derived resources.
  • Resource Efficiency - The use of biomass as a raw material can contribute to a more circular economy, where waste from one process becomes the feedstock for another. This approach increases resource efficiency and reduces environmental impact compared to linear models of production.

Approaches for the Production of Biobased Chemicals

There are two main ways in which biobased chemicals can be obtained from biomass feedstocks:

  1. Direct Extraction from Biomass - In this approach the target chemicals already exist within the feedstock. Hence, the focus of the bioprocess is on the extraction of the target chemical and then on subsequent separation and purification steps. CBD (cannabidiol), an alkaloid obtained from extracts of the hemp (cannabis) plant, is one example, among thousands, of a biobased chemical obtained this way.
  2. Production from Biomass or Biomass-Derived Compounds - Here the biobased chemical does not exist natively in the feedstock but is produced from it. This conversion can involve chemical, thermal, catalytic, and biological approaches or a combination of these. It is usually the case that the key stage of the bioprocess, where the biobased chemical is produced, works on a fraction, or derivative, of the original biomass feedstock. For example, ethanol can be produced via fermentation of the monomeric sugars obtained when the lignocellulosic polysaccharides (cellulose and/or hemicellulose) are hydrolysed. Alternatively, ethanol can also be produced via catalytic reforming of the syngas produced in the gasification of biomass.
The viability of obtaining a specific biobased chemical from biomass depends on a wide variety of factors, including the chemical composition of the feedstock and its suitability for different bioprocessing technologies. In some cases a feedstock may not be a good match for a particular biobased chemical but may be more suitable for the production of other types of biobased chemicals.

How Celignis Can Help

At Celignis our multidisciplinary team has strong understanding of: biomass chemistry, bioprocessing technologies, and the mechanisms and challenges involved in producing a wide variety of biobased chemicals. We are ready to work with you on developing a suitable bioprocess to either obtain your targeted biobased chemical from biomass or to obtain the most appropriate biobased chemicals from a given feedstock.

Bioethanol - Background

Ethanol Chemistry and Applications

Chemically, ethanol is a simple compound with the molecular formula C2H5OH. It consists of a two-carbon chain (ethane), with one of the hydrogens replaced by a hydroxyl (OH) group, which makes it an alcohol. It is this hydroxyl group that gives ethanol its characteristic properties, such as its ability to dissolve in water and to act as a solvent for many organic compounds. Biobased ethanol is typically referred to as bioethanol.

Ethanol has many important applications, a few of these are listed below:
  • Fuel - Bioethanol can be used in flex-fuel vehicles, which can run on any mix of gasoline and ethanol up to 85% ethanol. Alternatively, it can be mixed with gasoline to improve combustion, reduce carbon monoxide emissions, and extend fossil fuel supplies. In many countries, gasoline is commonly sold as E10 (10% ethanol, 90% gasoline) or E85 (85% ethanol, 15% gasoline).
  • Chemical Industry - Ethanol is a versatile molecule used as a starting material for the production of other chemicals. It can be dehydrated to produce ethylene, which is a key raw material for a wide range of products, including plastics, resins, and synthetic fibers.
  • Solvent - Ethanol is a good solvent and is used in a wide range of products, including paints, varnishes, perfumes, and flavors.
  • Disinfectant - Ethanol is effective against many bacteria, viruses, and fungi, and is commonly used in hand sanitizers and disinfecting wipes.

History of Ethanol Production

It is possible for ethanol to be produced from fossil fuels, specifically from petroleum or natural gas, through a process known as hydration of ethylene. In the chemical industry, ethylene is typically produced through steam cracking of hydrocarbons derived from petroleum or natural gas. In the steam cracking process, hydrocarbon molecules are broken down into smaller molecules, one of which is ethylene. The ethylene can then be converted into ethanol through a process called acid-catalyzed hydration. In this process, ethylene (C2H4) is reacted with water (H2O) in the presence of an acid catalyst to produce ethanol (C2H5OH).

However, currently the vast majority of ethanol is produced from biomass resources. Most of the currently-produced ethanol is termed first-generation ethanol, meaning that it is produced from sugars or starches derived fom food crops (e.g. sugarcane, wheat, corn). The process of bioethanol production from these feedstocks is relatively simple as there are well-established efficient routes for hydrolysing sucrose and starch to monomeric glucose. These sugars are then fermented by yeasts or bacteria, resulting in the production of ethanol and carbon dioxide. The fermentation mixture, known as beer, is then distilled to separate the ethanol from the water and other components.

Bioethanol from Lignocellulosic Feedstocks - Hydrolysis Platform

Biomass Hydrolysis

The current focus of bioprocess development on bioethanol production concerns utilising lignocellulosic feedstocks. These feedstocks contain sugars, like many 1st generation bioethanol feedstocks, that can be used as substrates for the production of bioethanol via fermentation. However, the difference is that these sugars are part of the structural polysaccharides cellulose and hemicellulose, rather than the easier to process sucrose and starch.

In the case of cellulose, the challenge is in effectively hydrolysing it to obtain monomeric glucose. This hydrolysis can use acid but generally involves the action of cellulase enzymes. It is more challenging to hydrolyse cellulose than starch due to the crystalline nature of cellulose and also due to complications associated with the wider lignocellulosic matrix. For example, the activity of cellulase enzymes is often hindered in many lignocellulosic feedstocks due to the presence of lignin. As a result, most bioprocesses require a pretreatment stage that make the substrate more amenable for enzymatic hydrolysis.

Fermentation of Biomass-Derived Sugars

In bioethanol fermentation, a primary target is a high concentration of fermentable sugars. This will then lead to higher concentrations of ethanol in the beer and, hence, in lower product recovery costs. However, the pretreatment and hydrolysis stages may also release other compounds into the liquid phase, for example components of the extractives and some sugar degradation products. These compounds can complicate the downstream fermentation, hence it is important that either robust microorganisms are used for the fermentation or that the concentrations of such fermentation inhibitors are minimised. Achieving these aims requires careful work in the bioprocess development.

Additionally, if fermentation of non-cellulosic sugars (i.e. hemicellulose sugars) to bioethanol is also targeted then classical yeasts can not be used as these can not effectively process 5-carbon sugars (such as xylose and arabinose). Micro-organisms suitable for processing these sugars should be screened according to the specific hydrolysate obtained from the sample.

There are several approaches that can be used for the hydrolysis of lignocellulosic feedstocks and the subsequent fermentation of the liberated sugars. These include: 1. Separate hydrolysis and fermentation (SHF); 2. Simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF); 3. Simultaneous saccharification and co-fermentation (SSCF). SHF allows both enzymes and yeast to operate at their optimum conditions, but is limited with product inhibition to enzymes and feed inhibition to yeast. This is overcome in SSF and SSFC fermentation where the enzymatic product glucose is consumed by yeast as it is produced. High-solids-loading fermentation with ethanol-tolerant yeast strains allows production of high concentrations of ethanol. However, high-solids fermentation causes viscosity issues and hence suitable fermentation regimes and mixers should be designed in order to obtain maximum ethanol concentrations, yields and productivity.

Click here to read more about bioethanol fermentation.

Get more info...Bioethanol Fermentation

Recovery of Bioethanol after Fermentation

The conventional method for recovering bioethanol from fermentation broths is distillation, which separates the ethanol from water and other components based on differences in boiling points. However, distillation is energy-intensive, particularly when dealing with dilute solutions. Ethanol forms an azeotrope with water at about 95% ethanol concentration, meaning they boil at the same temperature at this composition. To break the azeotrope and obtain anhydrous ethanol (nearly 100% ethanol), an additional dehydration step is needed, often involving the use of a molecular sieve, which adsorbs water but not ethanol. This adds to the energy cost and complexity of the process.

One way to reduce the energy cost of bioethanol recovery is to increase the concentration of ethanol in the fermentation broth. This can be achieved by optimizing the fermentation process to maximize the yield of ethanol. Genetic engineering of the fermentation organisms may also help increase ethanol concentrations. However, high concentrations of ethanol can inhibit the organisms' activity, limiting how much the ethanol concentration can be increased.

Researchers are also exploring a variety of novel methods to recover ethanol more efficiently. For instance, pervaporation uses a membrane that selectively allows ethanol to pass through, effectively concentrating the ethanol. This process is potentially less energy-intensive than distillation, particularly for dilute solutions. Other alternative methods being explored include adsorption, where ethanol is selectively captured on a solid material, then later released; and extractive distillation, which involves adding a third component to the mixture to change the relative volatility of ethanol and water and break the azeotrope.

Valorisation of Other Biomass Components

Lignocellulosic biomass feedstocks vary greatly in their compositions, however they all contain cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin. In addition, some lignocellulosic biomass can contain significant amounts of extractives as well as ash and protein.

The production of second-generation bioethanol is complex and requires significant CAPEX and OPEX. In the case of a bioprocess that is only focused on the production of bioethanol from the cellulose fraction, 60+% of the biomass (depending on composition) may not be part of the primary conversion mechanism. The viability of the bioprocess can improve if greater proportions of the biomass are valorised. The ways this can happen will depend on the pretreatment, hydrolysis, and fermentation technologies being employed.

For example, an organosolv pretreatment may remove the lignin and hemicellulose into the liquid phase, leaving the cellulose in the residual solid that is then hydrolysed to glucose and fermented to bioethanol. Here, there may be opportunites to separately valorise the lignin and hemicellulose fractions, allowing for potentially enhanced revenue from the feedstock but leading to a more complex process as these downstream treatments need to be integrated. Conversely, a steam explosion pretreatment would physically-disrupt the biomass but leave much more of the hemicellulose and lignin in the cellulose-containing solid. In this scenario, cellulose and hemicellulose could both be hydrolysed and the liberated sugars fermented to bioethanol. This could potentially lead to higher bioethanol yields compared to the first example, where only cellulose was hydrolysed. The post-hydrolysis solids would contain much of the lignin, as well as unhydrolysed portions of cellulose and hemicellulose. This substrate would not have the potential value of the isolated lignin fraction from the organosolv pretreatment but it could be combusted to provided energy for the bioprocess.

The choice of how different fractions of biomass are valorised is a key part of any bioprocess and requires detailed understanding of lignocellulose chemistry, conversion mechanisms, and product markets. At Celignis our multidisciplinary team are experts in all these sectors and can work with you on developing an optimised bioethanol production bioprocess that effectively valorises the feedstock.

Bioethanol from Lignocellulosic Feedstocks via Gasification


An alternative route for producing bioethanol from lignocellulosic feedstocks is via the catalytic or biological reforming of the gases produced from the thermal processing of the biomass, with gasification considered to be the most suitable thermal treatment.

Gasification targets the production of a synthesis gas, also known as syngas. This gas is a mixture of mainly carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2). The gasification process typically involves high temperatures (above 800oC) in the presence of a controlled amount of oxygen or steam. Since the formation of the gas from gasification is endothermic, the necessary temperature is attained via the oxygen-burning of a portion of the feedstock. When air is used to supply the oxygen the resulting gas is termed a producer gas. However, the use of air is only a viable option for gasification technologies where electricity production is the target. The catalytic processes required for the synthesis of bioethanol require a much cleaner gas.

The general formula for the oxygen-fuelled gasification of carbohydrates is included below:

C6H12O6 + 32O2 -> 6CO + 3H2 + 3H2O

The ratio of hydrogen to carbon-monoxide in the syngas can be adjusted, according to downstream bioethanol production requirements, using the Water-Gas Shift (WGS) reaction. This involves carbon monoxide and water, producing carbon dioxide and hydrogen:

CO + H2O -> CO2 + H2

There are two main types of WGS reactions: high-temperature WGS (HTWGS) and low-temperature WGS (LTWGS). HTWGS operates at around 350-450oC and is typically the first stage due to its greater conversion efficiency. LTWGS operates at around 200-250oC and helps to convert any remaining CO.

Syngas to Ethanol (Catalytic Approach)

The conversion of syngas into ethanol is a complex process that involves a series of chemical catalytic reactions. One common approach is to first convert the syngas into methanol or dimethyl ether (DME) using a methanol or DME synthesis catalyst. For instance, copper-based catalysts, often supported on zinc oxide and alumina, are typically used for methanol synthesis. The reaction proceeds as follows:

CO + 2H2 -> CH3O

Once methanol is produced, it can be further converted into ethanol via a process known as the "methanol homologation" or "methanol-to-ethanol" (MTOE) process. This involves passing methanol over a catalyst bed containing a mixture of copper and zinc oxides at high temperatures (250-400C) and pressures (50-100 atm). The key reaction is the conversion of two methanol molecules into one ethanol and one water molecule:

2CH3OH -> CH3CH2OH + H2O

Alternatively, syngas can be converted directly into ethanol in a single step using specialized catalysts. This process, known as "syngas-to-ethanol" (STOE), requires catalysts that can facilitate complex multiple-step reactions. These catalysts often include elements such as rhodium, cobalt, or molybdenum, often supported on a metal oxide. The direct STOE process involves several reaction steps. First, CO and H2 combine to form an intermediate compound, likely a surface-bound formyl species (HCO). Through subsequent reactions, this intermediate can be further hydrogenated to form an ethanol molecule:

CO + 3H2 -> CH3CH2OH + H2O

While the direct STOE process has the advantage of potentially higher yields and simpler process design, it is generally more challenging than the indirect MTOE process due to the complexity of the reactions and the demanding requirements for the catalysts. Catalyst deactivation and selectivity towards ethanol (as opposed to other products like methane or higher alcohols) remain significant challenges for the STOE process.

Syngas Fermentation

Syngas fermentation, also known as gas fermentation or syngas bioconversion, is an alternative, biological, route for the production of products (such as bioethanol) from syngas. The process employs a group of microorganisms known as acetogens, a type of anaerobic bacteria capable of using carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2), and hydrogen (H2) - the primary constituents of syngas - to grow and produce various chemicals. These organisms follow a metabolic pathway known as the Wood-Ljungdahl pathway or Acetyl-CoA pathway.

In the case of ethanol production, acetogenic bacteria, such as Clostridium autoethanogenum and Clostridium ljungdahlii, are commonly used. These bacteria convert syngas to acetyl-CoA, an important molecule in metabolism, which can then be converted into ethanol. The process involves the following steps:
  1. Syngas Cleanup: Here the focus is on removing contaminants that could inhibit the bacteria.
  2. Fermentation: The cleaned syngas is fed into a bioreactor containing the acetogenic bacteria. The bacteria consume the CO, CO2, and H2 in the syngas and produce ethanol, along with other products such as acetic acid, butanol, and butyric acid.
  3. Product Recovery: The products of the fermentation are separated from the fermentation broth, typically using a combination of distillation and other separation processes. The ethanol is then further purified as needed for its intended use.

Syngas fermentation has several potential advantages over the catalytic route. It can operate at relatively low temperatures and pressures, reducing energy costs, and it can also potentially handle a wider range of syngas compositions, since the bacteria can adjust their metabolism to use available resources. Additionally, it has the potential to produce a range of other valuable chemicals in addition to ethanol.

However, there are also challenges. The bacteria can be sensitive to trace contaminants in the syngas, and maintaining stable and productive bacterial cultures can be difficult. The fermentation process also tends to be slower than catalytic processes, which could impact the overall efficiency and economics of the process.

Syngas Ethanol vs. Hydrolysis Ethanol

Advantages of bioethanol production via gasification:
  • Conversion of Most of the Biomass - Any biomass component containing carbon and hydrogen atoms can contribute to gasification syngas, whilst when the hydrolysis platform is employed only those fractions containing carbohydrates (i.e. cellulose and hemicellulose) can contribute towards the production of ethanol.
  • Feedstock Flexibility - Related to the above, gasification can handle a wide variety of feedstocks, including mixed and low-quality feedstocks, due to its high processing temperature and capacity to convert all volatile components of biomass into syngas.
  • Minimal Pretreatments Required - Unlike the hydrolysis platform, gasification requires minimal sample pretreatment, with particle-size reduction (mechanical pretreatment) usually being the only pretreatment employed.
Disadvantages of bioethanol production via gasification:
  • Gas Cleanup - The raw syngas from gasification contains various contaminants (tars, particulates, sulphur and nitrogen compounds) that must be effectively cleaned before the subsequent conversion process, which adds complexity and cost to the process.
  • Catalyst Sensitivity - In catalytic conversion, the catalysts used for syngas to ethanol conversion can be sensitive to impurities in the syngas and may deactivate over time, which can affect process efficiency and economics.
  • Process Conditions - Gasification requires high temperatures and pressures, which can increase operational challenges and costs.
  • Uncompetitive at Small Scales - The technologies employed for gasification, syngas cleanup, and catalytic/biological reforming of the syngas to ethanol are relatively new and complex. As a result, they currently need to operate at large scales in order for the process to be economically viable. This places a high CAPEX barrier to entry.

Bioprocess Development for Bioethanol Production - How Celignis Works With Our Clients

At Celignis, our expertise and infrastructure are focused on the production of bioethanol via the hydrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass and the subsequent fermentation of the liberated sugars. Developing a fully-integrated process for bioethanol production from a feedstock, involves a number of different steps, outlined below. We can work on projects where all these steps are undertaken or we can focus on the optimisation of a particular stage in the process. The latter is particularly relevant where our clients already have a technology for bioethanol production and are looking for optimising the process at particular nodes.

1. Understanding Your Requirements

Prior to undertaking bioprocess projects we learn from our clients what their targets are from the process as well as whether there are any restrictions or requirements that may need to form the boundaries of the work that we undertake. These help to guide us to then prepare a potential bioprocess development project.

For example, in the context of bioethanol production, the primary focus of one client may be on the fermentation of cellulose-derived glucose to ethanol whilst another client may be satisfied with lower ethanol yields from cellulose providing that the hemicellulose fraction can also be used for bioethanol production. These different preferences are likely to influence our choices of pretreatment technology, hydrolysis and fermentation approaches, and process conditions.

2. Detailed Feedstock Analysis

In cases where you have already selected a feedstock for the bioprocess, we would then undertake a detailed compositional analysis (P10 or, ideally, P19) of representative samples of that feedstock.

In cases where the feedstock has not yet been selected we can review your list of candidate feedstocks, selecting top candidates based on our prior experience in their analysis and bioprocessing. If you do not have a list of candidate feedstocks then we can provide one, based on your location and the requirements outlined in Stage 1. We would then analyse in detail these priority feedstocks and come to a decision, based on the compositional data and other relevant factors (e.g. price, supply, consistency etc.) on a selected feedstock for the project.

At this point of the project, the Celignis Bioprocess team typically meet to discuss and prepare a project proposal for the development of a bioprocess for bioethanol production from this feedstock. After this proposal is reviewed by the client, and revised if needed, we are then ready to start work on the next stages.

3. Pretreatment Optimisation (Lab-Scale)

Our projects usually involve undertaking a number of pretreatment experiments, covering a variety of process conditions. We follow a scientifically-based Design of Experiments (DoE) protocol where the criteria and boundaries for this DoE are formulated in close collaboration with our clients, considering the chemistry of the feedstock(s) and our understandings of the mechanisms of biomass pretreatment.

We usually recommend that these initial optimisation experiments are undertaken at the lab-scale (around TRL3) in order to reduce costs and the length of the project. For each experiment we analyse the solid and liquid outputs of the pretreatment process, leading to a detailed data-set where effects of process conditions on the yield and composition of the various streams can be explored and mapped.

We can also undertake a second iteration of lab-scale experiments in order to fine-tune the conditions based on the knowledge gained in the initial experiments.

4. Hydrolysis & Fermentation Optimisation

At the project proposal stage we will have decided with regards to which hydrolysis/fermentation approach will be undertaken (i.e. Separate Hydrolysis and Fermentation (SHF); Simultaneous Saccharification and Fermentation (SSF); or Simultaneous Saccharification and Co-Fermentation (SSCF)).

Each of these approaches involves a number of different process conditions (e.g. solid-loading, temperature, reaction times, mixing) that need to be optimised. Hence, this stage of the project involves a similar DoE being undertaken where these conditions are narrowed down. Again, these optimisation experiments are undertaken at the lab-scale in order to accelerate the outputs and reduce project costs.

This stage usually follows the pretreatment optimisation activities, however it is possible that there can be some overlap in order to reach the final project outputs more quickly.

5. Bioethanol Recovery

Based on the outputs of the prior lab-scale Stages we can optimise the methods employed for separating and purifying the bioethanol from the fermentation beer. We can also potentially look at the recovery of other compounds from the broth.

It is possible for this Stage to run alongside Stage 4.

6. Valorisation of Remaining Biomass

Depending on the pretreatment, hydrolysis, and fermentation processess employed in the project, we can look at valorising those biomass components that are not hydrolysed to sugars and fermented to bioethanol. For example, we can analyse the enzymatic hydrolysis residue for its suitability for combustion. In another scenario we can evaluate the potential for valorising the hemicellulose sugars that are hydrolysed in the dilute-acid-pretreatment stage.

7. Validation at Higher TRLs

Once we have concluded our optimisation of the bioethanol bioprocess conditions at the lab-scale we can then test those conditions at higher technology readiness levels (TRLs). The scales at which we can operate are dependent on the type of technology employed, but can reach up to 100 litres.

We have all of the necessary downstream equipment to efficiently handle the solid and liquid streams arising from these scaled-up activities.

If we find that there are differences between the yield and compositions of the different streams, compared with our lab-scale experiments, then we can explore the potential reasons for these and work on final tweaks to optimise the bioprocess for higher TRLs.

8. Technoeconomic Analysis (TEA)

The Celignis team, including Oscar our chief TEA expert, can undertake a detailed technoeconomic analysis of the developed process. We apply accurate and realistic costing models to determine the CAPEX and OPEX of simulated and pilot scale processes which are then used to determine key economic indicators such as IRR, NPV and payback periods.

Within these TEAs we can undertake sensitivity analyses to assess the effect of variable costs and revenues on the commercial viability of the bioethanol production process.

Our preferred approach is to include TEA studies at each stage of the development of the bioprocess, so that the process can be optimised in a commercially-relevant way, followed by a more detailed TEA after the process has been optimised and tested at higher TRL levels.

Click here to read more about the technoeconomic analysis (TEA) services offered by Celignis.

Bioethanol Projects - Case Study

Bioethanol from Palm Residues

Celignis undertook a bioprocess development project for a client, based in the Middle East, that was targeting the production of bioethanol from the residues of local palm trees. This was a lab-scale vertically-integrated project covering pretreatment, hydrolysis, and fermentation.

The client initially had a certain type of pretreatment technology in mind and requested that we undertake a series of experiments to assess it. However, based on our initial compositional analysis of the feedstocks, we had reservations that the chosen pretreatment would be suitable for such biomass. We discussed this with the client and it was agreed that three different types of pretreatments were tested, with each pretreatment type being undertaken a number of times in order to allow for an initial evaluation on the effects of varying the process parameters on the yield and compositions of the output streams.

The results from these initial pretreatment experiments confirmed Celignis's reservations regarding the originally-chosen pretreatment and resulted in the pretreatment technology that we recommended, based on the feedstock compositional data, being selected for further study.

There then followed a more extensive series of lab-scale experiments focused on optimising the pretreatment conditions so that the yields and commercial viability of the process as a whole could be improved. The next stage of the project then involved optimising the type and dosage of enzymes, as well as other factors such as the solid-loading, in order to maximise ethanol yields from the targeted biomass components.


Contact Celignis Bioprocess

With regards to the development and optimisation of bioprocess for the production of bioethanol from biomass, the Celignis Bioprocess team members with the most experience in undertaking such projects are listed below. Feel free to contact them to discuss potential projects.

Lalitha Gottumukkala

Founder of Celignis Bioprocess, CIO of Celignis


Has a deep understanding of all biological and chemical aspects of bioproceses. Has developed Celignis into a renowned provider of bioprocess development services to a global network of clients.

Oscar Bedzo

Bioprocess Project Manager & Technoeconomic Analysis Lead


A dynamic, purpose-driven chemical engineer with expertise in bioprocess development, process design, simulation and techno-economic analysis over several years in the bioeconomy sector.

Dan Hayes

Celignis CEO And Founder

PhD (Analytical Chemistry)

Dreamer and achiever. Took Celignis from a concept in a research project to being the bioeconomy's premier provider of analytical and bioprocessing expertise.

Other Biobased Chemicals


Butanol is a four-carbon alcohol (C4H9OH) that has applications as a biofuel and a chemical feedstock. Its production is generally achieved via a microbial fermentation process, often using species of bacteria from the Clostridium genus

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Xylitol, a five-carbon sugar alcohol, has the same sweetness as sucrose, but with around 40% less calories, making it a popular sugar substitute in many 'low-calorie' products. It is usually produced from xylose using chemical or biological approaches.

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