Thermochemical conversion

Hand inserting plastic bottle into recyckling box in home with green plants in the background

With thermochemical recycling we can convert biomass residues and wastes, such as used plastics, to sustainable products. VTT provides a comprehensive piloting platform for pyrolysis and gasification.

Key facts

We develop new ideas on chemical recycling of wastes, such as plastics

VTT brings innovations rapidly and effectively from laboratory- to pilot-scale and supports industries in demonstration activities 

We help create European and wider partnering networks, covering value chains from raw materials to final products. 

Thermochemical conversion technologies enable recycling of biomass and plastic waste, helping replace fossil-based raw materials. They provide new solutions that enable the recycling of materials that could otherwise not be recycled.   

For example, less than 10% of plastics can be mechanically recycled today, while the rest is incinerated or landfilled.  With chemical recycling methods, like pyrolysis and gasification, we can significantly increase the recycling rate of plastic waste and offer an environmentally sound alternative to incineration. VTT develops solutions to converting low cost wastes, such as plastics, to high value sustainable products, like back to virgin plastics.

We provide novel solutions for more effective plastics recycling.

In addition to technology development, we actively disseminate our ideas and results to industries, as well as to the public. We help create European and wider partnering networks that cover entire value chains from initial raw materials to final products.

Decarbonising process industry

Thermochemical conversion technologies offer also a route to decarbonising industrial processes like steel, cement and chemical industries with sustainable feedstocks. These technologies may be integrated with existing infrastructure in a cost-efficient way. In addition, we contribute to further reductions in carbon emissions by developing hydrogen and high-value carbon products from methane.

Unique piloting facilities on thermochemical conversion

We have a strong track record in bringing innovations effectively from laboratory to pilot-scale and in supporting industries in their demonstration activities. Together with our clients, we have developed pyrolysis and gasification technologies for biomass residues and wastes. As examples, the world’s first integrated fast pyrolysis plant in Joensuu Finland is producing bio-oil to replace fossil fuels, and Lahti waste gasifier produces electricity and district heat for the City of Lahti from Solid Recovered Fuel. Bioruukki is our unique innovation and demonstration platform for bio- and circular economy businesses.​​ 

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