Single-Course English 5 ECTS


Overall Course Objectives

To provide the students with basic knowledge about the biorefinery concept and integrated processes that convert biomass into multiple products of bioenergy, biomaterials and biochemicals. An important part of the course deals with the importance and the use of Green Chemistry and Sustainability principles, and all the examples and the report are elaborated always on the basis of such principles

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the physical and chemical structures of biomass and their potential use for production of bioenergy, biomaterials and biochemicals
  • Identify and describe biomass resources (forest, agricultural, municipal and marine biomass), their occurrence and application in a biorefinery concept
  • Identify and describe biomass constituents (starch, cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin, pectin, protein, lipids)
  • Outline the principles of a biorefinery including chemical, biological and thermo-chemical conversion methods
  • Outline and compare various methods of biomass processing for production of bioenergy products, biomaterials, chemicals and building blocks for chemical synthesis
  • Describe the differences between aerobic and anaerobic biological processes
  • Describe the steps of anaerobic digestion processes
  • Determine reactor configuration to treat specific biomass types
  • Write a scientific report
  • Design a theoretical and creative biorefinery based on scientific references
  • Use literature databases concerning renewable resources and sustainable management

Course Content

The course will give a broad perspective over the biorefinery concept by introducing the key integrated processes, such as biomass production, pretreatment, and chemical-, biological- and thermo-chemical- conversion. The lectures will focus on bioresources and single processing steps and will include industrial and scientific examples. In the case study the students will combine multiple processing steps into a novel biorefinery concept. There will be emphasis on sustainable systems throughout the course.
The course is divided into four main blocks:
1. Chemical characterization of biomass and recovery of biochemicals of industrial interest. Calculations include mass balances and stoichiometry.
2. Green processes/techniques used in biorefineries: Fermentation processes, Enzyme technology, Membrane technology, Clean solvents, Integration reaction-separation, Use of various pretreatment processes eg. thermochemical, microwaves/ultrasound.
3. Introduction to Energy from Biomass: Physical, microbiological, and thermodynamic processes. Gasification and pyrolysis. Biogas.
4. Other applications: Biomaterials.
5. Biological treatment methods for waste and wastewater for production of bioproducts, biofuels and energy

Recommended prerequisites

27002, or similar

Teaching Method

Lectures and project work


The study material will be based on a compendium and international journal articles.

Limited number of seats

Minimum: 10.

Please be aware that this course will only be held if the required minimum number of participants is met. You will be informed 8 days before the start of the course, whether the course will be held.

See course in the course database.





13 weeks


Chemical Engineering


DTU Lyngby Campus

Course code 28872
Course type Candidate
Semester start Week 35
Semester end Week 48
Days Fri 8-12

7.500,00 DKK

Please note that this course has participants limitation. Read more