NIGK13010U Biorefining and Conversion of Biomass

Volume 2013/2014
The course is adressing the biorefining of biomass to fuels, chemicals and materials.
Through an engineering approach the student will gain an understanding of technical aspects with respect to biomass logistics, pretreatment, hydrolysis, fermentation, hydrogenation, product recovery, and thermochemical processing. Design of integrated processes will be addressed, just as basic process modelling and thermodynamics will be included. Overall evaluation of biomass processing will be considered from economic, environmental, and resource perspectives.
Learning Outcome

After the course the students should be able to:


  • List the most relevant bioenergy products, biochemicals and biomaterials (as of today)
  • List possible chemical, thermochemical and biochemical methods to produce relevant biochemicals and biomaterials
  • Describe the physical and chemical structures of biomasses in relation to their potential use and conversion to bioenergy, biochemicals and biomaterials
  • Describe the process steps related to various types of biomass conversion
  • List and explain the principles of unit operations commonly applied for processing and conversion of biomass in biorefineries
  • Describe methods for process control and monitoring


  • Apply theory to solve theoretical problems regarding process equipment, process design and process optimization
  • Analyse different biorefinery schemes and suggest possibilities for integration and optimization
  • Draw process flow diagrams to set up and solve mass balances
  • Apply mass balances and equilibrium calculations to make design calculation on equilibrium stage processes such as distillation and extraction


  • Evaluate the  use of different biomasses within a biorefinery in relation to processing and conversion to marketable bioproducts
  • Discus possibilities of process integration in various biorefinery schemes in order to optimize use of biomass
  • Perform mass balance modeling of basic processes in order to suggest feasible process configurations
Lectures, exercises and essays
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Exam
  • 23
  • Excursions
  • 8
  • Lectures
  • 100
  • Theory exercises
  • 75
  • Total
  • 206
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written examination, 4 hours under invigilation
Exam registration requirements
Completed exercises and essays
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assesment

See learning goals.