IPST Researchers to Develop Process for Integration of Southern Softwoods into Pulp, Paper, Bioenergy and Biofuels

Dec. 30, 2010 - IPST (Institute of Paper Science and Technology) said that Professor Art Ragauskas and a team, with funding and support from the U.S. Department of Energy, will develop the necessary laboratory data to identify how new biofuel operations could be integrated into a modern kraft biorefinery operation, generating both 2nd- and 3rd-generation biofuels and value-added green materials.

Dr. Art Ragauskas

In Georgia and the Southeast (USA), the forest products industry is poised to take a lead role in the conversion of pine to value-added green materials, fuels and energy. The challenge for the near future is to accelerate technological developments to facilitate the conversion of southern softwoods into pulp, paper, bioenergy and biofuels. These technologies would take advantage of the existing capital investments the forest products industry has made in the Southeast for wood collection, fractionation, pulping and processing. A key challenge for the implementation of these technologies is to demonstrate that these benefits can be achieved with ongoing forest products unit operations and will generate current and future product streams, IPST said.

According to IPST, Dr. Ragauskasí project seeks to develop an integrated southern pine wood to biofuels/ biomaterials processing facility to test advanced integrated wood processing technologies at the laboratory scale, including generation of the bioethanol from pine residues and hemicelluloses extracted from pine woodchips; conversion of modified woodchips to enhanced linerboard and bleach grade pulps; and efficient conversion of pine residues, bark and kraft cooking liquor into a useful pyrolysis oil.

The Institute for Paper Science and Technology (IPST) was created in 1929 to provide science, technology and education in support of a vibrant industry. Today, evolving to meet the needs of a suite of industries with unlimited potential and complex challenges, IPST is an industrial research and development consortium strategically integrated within the vast resources of the Georgia Institute of Technology. IPST is focused on leveraging its capabilities and access to world-class research personnel at IPST and Georgia Tech to provide solutions to strategic, economic, scientific, and technical challenges facing the forest products and paper industries.

For further information, please visit IPST's web site: www.ipst.gatech.edu