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Recovery and Reuse through Design and Development (R2D2)

Carlsbergfondets postdoc-stipendier i Danmark


The objective of this project is to investigate the impact of technical, economic, societal, and customer readiness factors in transitioning resource recovery solutions that are already established in academia to industrially implemented units. The project will employ Process Systems Engineering (PSE) methods and tools to develop a systematic multi-scale multi-dimensional framework that can identify, narrow down and develop resource recovery from a concept to an implementable solution. This project will be carried out in collaboration with Danish bio-based industry producing food ingredients, biopharmaceuticals and biochemical products, all processes which generate large amounts of wastewater from upstream processes such as fermentation, and contain potentially valuable compounds.


Advancing towards a Circular Economy is a key initiative of the European commission and striving for "zero-waste" production is one pillar in achieving this initiative. In the bio-based production industry resource recovery units can bring "zero-waste" production closer by recovering valuable materials from waste which is both economically lucrative and technologically plausible. However, despite these facts industrial implementation of resource recovery is limited. A reason for this limited implementation is the lack of a coherent method that can be used to identify, develop and implement applicable platform technologies for resource recovery taking into account complex interactions between technical, economic and societal considerations. This project addresses this shortfall.


To achieve the objectives outlined, a systematic model based screening methodology (employing PSE concepts) will be developed, that will efficiently identify economically lucrative resources in bio-based production waste/ intermediate streams, and identify applicable separation technologies to recover these resources. A systematic assessment method will then be developed to select most suited separation technology(s) for a given waste stream that takes concepts from Net Present Value Analysis, Technical, Customer and Societal Readiness. Together, these two methodologies will form one cohesive framework that can be used to identify and develop resource recovery solutions. To ensure industrial relevancy this work will be carried out in close collaboration with Danish bio-based industry.


The successful completion of this project will allow scientifically established and developed resource recovery solutions to be efficiently transitioned to industrial solutions. This will be beneficial for the scientific community, the general public as well as Danish industry. For Danish industry, this work allows for the rapid identification and development of resource recovery opportunities that will deliver tangible economic benefits and improved global competiveness. For the general public, this work will contribute towards the drive for a zero-waste economy that is sustainable and environmentally responsible. For the scientific community this work helps identifying the potential non-technical considerations that can impact implementation of otherwise promising research results.