Proof of Concept funds

Proof of Concept funds

BBNet’s POC funding

Current funding

Joint Call: The Carbon Recycling Network and BBNet: NO CARBON LOST: Eliminating CO2 Production from Biomass-based Fermentation Processes

8 July 2022


To slow global temperature rises, we must dramatically reduce the use of fossil carbon as sources of energy, fuels and chemicals and instead use biomass. The sustainable recycling of agricultural and forestry biomass carbon into gaseous or chemical products can be accomplished through biological conversion processes based on anaerobic digestion or fermentation, respectively. The latter requires the prior deconstruction of the biomass into either sugars or synthesis gas (syngas) through the respective action of either lignocellulolytic enzymes or thermal gasification. However, traditional, carbohydrate-based fermentation processes, such as ethanol production, waste more than one third of the carbon which is not incorporated into the product but lost in the form of CO2.  Eliminating this loss would reduce GHG emissions and improve productivity, potentially by >50%.

The two NIBBs, the Carbon Recycling Network and BBNet (The Biomass Biorefinery Network) wish to fund proof of concept projects that will enable a step-change in fermentation processes to further reduce the carbon footprint of biomass exploitation. These will improve the conversion of biomass to fermentable carbon (sugar) and underpin the design, build and test of innovative organisms (monocultures & synthetic communities) and bio-processes that can maximise the conversion of this sustainable carbon to chemical commodities without CO2 release.

The envisaged bio-manufacturing solutions will contribute to the UKs as well as global NetZero targets by eliminating CO2 production during biomass-based fermentation bioprocesses, while simultaneously improving productivity through incorporation of the lost carbon into the chemicals and material being manufactured.

Applications are invited from the Carbon Recycling Network and BBNet to apply for Proof of Concept (POC) funds

OPENS: 25 May 2022

CLOSES: 17:00, 8 JULY 2022


ELIGIBILTY: Carbon Recycling Network & BBNet membership & UKRI-BBSRC eligible


·       POCs are awarded at 80% fEC.  The awardee at the academic institution MUST be willing to provide the remaining 20% fEC.

·       POC funds are to support projects of less than 12 months

·       The POC project needs to be at Technology Readiness Levels 1-4

·       Although an industrial partner is not required for POC funding, it is encouraged

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