Research Areas

Renewable Lignin Biofuel from an Industrial By-Product Stream

In collaboration with Liquid Lignin Company, an easily processable, flowable lignin has been discovered that can be used to continuously produce a clean-burning, low-ash biofuel from a key paper mill by-product stream.

Purification and Fractionation for making Ultrapure Lignin

Separation processes are being investigated that can convert the lignin recovered from a dirty by-product stream into an ultrapure product containing less than 100 ppm metals. Clean lignins such as these can serve as renewable biopolymers for a range of applications.
Watch video to see how we can simultaneously purify and fractionate lignin to make it ultrapure!

Carbonaceous Oligomers via Supercritical Extraction for Advanced-Materials Applications

The fractionation of carbonaceous oligomers via supercritical extraction has been used to produce the lowest mol wt liquid-crystalline PAH oligomer ever observed. Advanced-materials applications are anticipated.

Rapid expansion of sub- and supercritical solutions into liquid solvents (RESOLV) process for encapsulation of bioactive agents in polymeric nanoparticles

Rapid expansion of sub- and supercritical solutions into liquid solvents (RESOLV) process has been used to fabricate bioactive compound-loaded polymeric nanoparticles with tunable particle size, loading capacity, and release profile. Renewable biopolymers such as poly(L-lactide) and lignins are being investigated as encapsulating matrices for natural oxidative labile bioactive agents (e.g., catechins and curcuminoids).

John Blackburn and Michael Lake Liquid Lignin Co.
Alex Briseño UMass Amherst
Robert Enick Pittsburgh
David Hodge Michigan State
Wes Hoffman AFRL
James Klett ORNL
Amporn Sane Kasetsart Univ.
Jeremy Smith ORNL
Jim Watkins UMass Amherst

David Bruce, Ken Marcus, Amod Ogale, Mark Roberts, Yi Zheng Clemson

Funding Sources