Computational modelling for improved pretreatment of waste for ethanol and biogas production

The goal of this project is to use computational methods to identify and understand the chemistry that governs the decomposition of waste materials. Initial focus will be on lignocellulosic materials that can be found in, for example, paper tubes and cotton-based wastes. In the longer term these studies will be extended to keratin containing materials that can be found in, for example, feathers. These computational studies will be performed in close collaboration with current experimental work at the School of Engineering that uses these materials. This will allow for knowledge-based (instead of resource intensive) improvement of the decomposition of waste materials that can then be used for more efficient production of, for example, renewable energy.

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