BioHart (EU INTERREG program, 2016-2019)
In Dutch, the acronym BIO-HArT stands for 'Biorizon Innovation and Upscaling of Renewable Aromatics Technology'. Biorizon is a Shared Research Center with an initial focus on technology development for the production of functionalized biobased aromatics for performance materials, chemicals & coatings. Over the past years Biorizon has developed three commercially promising technologies for the conversion of wood, sugars and lignin into aromatics. By demonstrating the technology within this project on a larger scale, the confidence in the applicability of the technology on an industrial scale enhances and the risk to invest diminishes. Simultaneously bio-aromatics will be produced in sufficient quantities to be able to start application development routes.
Eighteen months after the project launch, the University of Antwerp has booked remarkable progress. Chemists of the Organic Synthesis division have developed new, convenient, scalable and green methods for the transformation of lignin oil monomers to valuable industrial chemicals such as catechol and pyrogallol. The developed methods use neither expensive catalysts, nor toxic solvents. A European patent application has been filed.
This project is established by a contribution of the European Interreg V Flanders-The Netherlands program that stimulates innovation, sustainable energy, a healthy environment and the labor market by means of cross-border projects. On a total budget of € 6.085.445,38 Interreg contributes € 3.042.722,69 (50 %) and besides that the provinces of North-Brabant, Antwerp, East-Flanders and Flemish-Brabant offered additional funding. Thereby they make an important contribution to the further development of the Flemish-Dutch border region as a top location for the transition to a more sustainable, biobased economy and an efficient use of natural resources.