Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation

Technology

Electrochemical Reductive Amination of Furfural

5-Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) has been called the “sleeping giant” of building block chemistry and listed among the top 10 biomass-based platform chemicals by the U.S Department of Energy. Reduc...
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Kyoung-Shin Choi, John Roylance | P170001US01

Technology

Enzymatic Depolymerization of Lignin

Lignin is a renewable resource that accounts for up to 30 percent of the dry weight of vascular plant cell walls. It is comprised of aromatic compounds that may be valuable commodities for the biofuel...
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Timothy Donohue, Daniel Gall, Wayne Kontur, Hoon Kim, John Ralph, Daniel Noguera, Brian Fox, Craig Bingman | P170274US02

Technology

Improved Biomass Conversion with GVL Co-Solvent

Production of fuels and chemicals from biomass requires utilization of all biomass fractions, i.e., cellulose, hemi-cellulose and lignin. Thus, product molecules from all fractions of biomass must be ...
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James Dumesic, Ali Hussain Motagamwala | P150223US01

Technology

One- and Two-Phase Conversion of Biomass to Furfural

Exploiting the energy potential of biomass high in cellulose and lignin—including grasses, shrubs, husks, bark, yard and mill offal not readily digestible by humans—offers a vast and renew...
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James Dumesic, Elif Gurbuz, Stephanie Wettstein, David Martin Alonso | P120195US01

Technology

Transgenic Lignin Easier to Break Down for Biofuel

Lignocellulosic biomass is a very desirable feedstock for biofuel production. If the fermentation process could be optimized, conversion of this biomass could yield 25 to 50 billion gallons of ethanol...
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John Ralph, Curtis Wilkerson, Saunia Withers, Shawn Mansfield | P100281US02

Technology

Lignin from Transgenic Poplar Is Easier to Process

Lignin is an important plant cell wall component that provides structural support and vascular functions. It is one of the most abundant organic polymers on Earth, constituting about 30 percent of non...
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John Ralph, Curtis Wilkerson, Saunia Withers, Shawn Mansfield | P100281US03

Technology

Unleashing Biomass Sugars Using Bromine Salt

Methods to produce bioethanol from cornstarch or sugarcane are inadequate to meet the global demand for renewable fuels. To be sustainable, biofuel production should rely on abundant, cheap, inedible ...
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Xuejun Pan, Li Shuai | P110209US02

Technology

Enhanced Biomass Digestion with Wood Wasp Bacteria

Plant biomass represents a vast and renewable source of energy. However, harnessing this energy requires breaking down tough lignin and cellulose cell walls. In nature, certain microbes can deconstruc...
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Cameron Currie, Brian Fox, Taichi Takasuka, Adam Book | P110314US03

Technology

Zip-Lignin™ Assay: An Analysis and Validation Tool

To produce pulp from wood, harsh chemicals are applied during cooking and bleaching mainly because lignin is tough to break down. To make it easier to degrade, Wisconsin researchers discovered how che...
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John Ralph, Steven Karlen, Fachuang Lu, Dharshana Padmakshan | P150118US02

Technology

Platinum-Free Catalysts for Fuel Cells

Fuel cells and other types of electrochemical cells rely on platinum cathodes to drive oxygen reduction. Although efficient, platinum cathodes are expensive given the element’s relative scarcity. On...
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Shannon Stahl, James Gerken, Colin Anson | P140274US02

Technology

Modified Yeast to Boost Biofuel Yields

Producing biofuel on an industrial scale requires efficient fermentation of cellulosic plant material. Glucose and xylose are two of the most abundant sugars found in biomass. The yeast most commonly ...
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Trey Sato, Jeff Piotrowski | P140199US02

Technology

Measuring Lignin in Corn Stalks

The lignin in corn stalks makes it difficult to process for biomass and harder for animals to digest. Levels are especially high in the tough outer ‘rind’ and vascular bundles of the stem. For th...
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Edgar Spalding, Sven Heckwolf | P140381US01

Technology

High Yield Method to Produce LGO from Biomass

Levoglucosenone (LGO) is a highly dehydrated sugar typically derived from cellulose. It is an important, non-petroleum building block chemical with potential uses in a wide range of industrial process...
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George Huber, Fei Cao, James Dumesic, Thomas Schwartz | P150101US01

Technology

Solar Cells Turn HMF to Valuable Platform Molecules

Photoelectrochemical cells (PECs) use solar energy to produce fuels, much as nature does through photosynthesis. In a typical PEC, fuels are formed by reduction reactions at the cathode. For example, ...
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Kyoung-Shin Choi, Hyun Gil Cha | P150132US01

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