Led by biotechnology company Circa Group, the project will build a flagship plant to create levoglucosenone (LGO). A chemical building block, LGO can be used to produce bio-based solvent Cyrene in one step, using feedstock from non-food renewable biomass. Cyrene is a bio-based alternative to traditional solvents such as NMP, DCM and DMF, which are under regulatory pressure worldwide due to their toxicity. With a unique property set, including viscosity, surface tension and polarities, Cyrene can be used to produce a range of advanced materials.
Tony Duncan, CEO and co-founder of Circa Group ( @circagroup ) , said, “Following five successful pilots, technology developed by Circa is one of the few out there providing sustainable options for bio-based solvents. We are delighted to kick-off this project and move into industrial scale while supporting the EU’s climate, energy and circular economy goals.”
The plant will be located in Eastern France and is expected to reach a production capacity of 1,000 tonnes of Cyrene per year. Engineering work will begin next month and the estimated commissioning date is end of 2022. Bringing together 11 partners from six countries, ReSolute will provide new manufacturing and employment opportunities in product manufacture and downstream conversion in Europe.
The duration of the project is 36 months (October 2020 – September 2023) with a total budget: €23m. Further details about this can be found on the European Commission website.
ReSolute Partners: IAR (FR), Circa Sustainable Chemicals BV (BE), Merck KGaA, Darmstadt (DE), Will & Co (NL), University of York (UK), Talga Resources (DE), Huntsman Specialty Chemicals (CH), CPL (UK), AgroParisTech (FR), PNO Consultants (FR) and PFA (BE)
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