BCT-33806 Conversions in Biobased Sciences


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Group work7
Course coordinator(s)prof. dr. JH Bitter
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. H Smidt
prof. dr. JH Bitter
N Masoud
Examiner(s)prof. dr. JH Bitter

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

BCT-24306 Renewable Resources and the (Bio)Chemical Production of Industrial Chemicals; BCT-23306 Biorefinery


To keep our planet inhabitable for future generations we should use its resources in a sustainable manner. We also want to keep (or increase) our standard of living. Therefore we need to convert feedstocks, preferably renewable such as biomass, as efficient as possible to desired products. Conversion of bio-based feedstock may involve homogenous catalysis, but very likely involves heterogeneous catalysis. This is e.g. the case if the reactants or substrates are dissolved in aqueous medium, while the catalyst is a solid or is immobilized on carriers.
In this course you learn how to tune chemical, biochemical and microbial catalysts in order to prepare desired products based on biomass. With that knowledge you will learn how to evaluate the different routes and you will be able to design an efficient conversion route. The latter implies that you will evaluate the efficiency of the designed conversion routes in terms of product yields, volumetric productivity and energy-input.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- explain how to tune chemical, biochemical and microbial catalysts to convert biomass in homogeneous and heterogeneous reactions;
- assess which (combination of) conversion route(s) is most efficient for a desired product;
- design an efficient (energy, cost) process to convert a give biomass based feedstock to a desired product;
- evaluate a designed conversion process in terms of product yields, volumetric productivity and energy-input.


Lectures, tutorials, case study in a group.


The course will be finished with a written exam.


Catalysis, Concepts and Green applications, Gadi Rothenberg.

Restricted Optional for: MBTBiotechnologyMScE: Environmental and Biobased Biotechnology6MO
MBSBiobased SciencesMScB: Biorefinery and conversion6MO