Projects per year
The appreciation of how conventional and fossil-based materials could be harmful to our planet is growing, especially when considering single-use and non-biodegradable plastics manufactured from fossil fuels. Accordingly, tackling climate change and plastic waste pollution entails a more responsible approach to sourcing raw materials and the adoption of less destructive end-of-life pathways. Livestock animals, in particular ruminants, process plant matter using a suite of mechanical, chemical and biological mechanisms through the act of digestion. The manure from these “living bioreactors” is ubiquitous and offers a largely untapped source of lignocellulosic biomass for the development of bio-based and biodegradable materials. In this review, we assess recent studies made into manure-based cellulose materials in terms of their material characteristics and implications for sustainability. Despite the surprisingly diverse body of research, it is apparent that progress towards the commercialisation of manure-derived cellulose materials is hindered by a lack of truly sustainable options and robust data to assess the performance against conventional materials alternatives. Nanocellulose, a natural biopolymer, has been successfully produced by living bioreactors and is presented as a candidate for future developments. Life cycle assessments from non-wood sources are however minimal, but there are some initial indications that manure-derived nanocellulose would offer environmental benefits over traditional wood-derived sources.
|Journal||International Journal of Biological Macromolecules|
|Publication status||Published - 23 Feb 2023|
FingerprintDive into the research topics of 'From trash to treasure: Sourcing high-value, sustainable cellulosic materials from living bioreactor waste streams'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
- 1 Active
NEUROMETA: Natural nEUROactive Mechanical mETAmaterials
1/10/21 → 30/09/26
Project: Research, Parent