Synthesis of technology pathways for an integrated biorefinery

Buping Bao*, Denny K. S. Ng, Mahmoud M. El-Halwagi, Douglas H. S. Tay

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The exhaustion of natural resources such as coal, oil and natural gas will soon become the global major crisis. As a result, there is an increased attention on the issues of energy security, environmental protections, and sustainable development. In addition, the increase in global energy demands and the desire to reduce damages to the environment motivate a shift to use more renewable energy sources. Biofuels are among the promising forms of renewable energy as it can be produced using a wide variety of feedstocks (e.g. traditional agriculture crops, energy crops, forestry products, municipal solid waste, etc.). Biorefineries are processing facilities that convert biomass into value-added products such as biofuels, specialty chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. One of the main research focuses on biorefineries is on individual conversion technology such as thermoconversion and bioconversion. As there is an extensive conversion technologies being established, a systematic optimization approach is required to synthesize the optimum technology pathways for integrated biorefinery design. A technology pathways diagram is first generated by compiling all available technology and their conversion/yield data. The optimization is then formulated as a mixed integral linear programming model to search for optimum network that achieves highest yield. A hypothetical case study presented to illustrate the proposed approach.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Event2009 AIChE Annual Meeting - Nashville, TN, United States
Duration: 8 Nov 200913 Nov 2009


Conference2009 AIChE Annual Meeting
Abbreviated title09AIChE
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNashville, TN


  • Biofuel
  • Biorefinery
  • Design
  • Reaction pathway
  • Renewables
  • Screening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Chemistry(all)


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