VTT develops products based on hydrothermal carbonisation (HTC). In HTC, biobased raw materials are converted into products using slightly elevated temperatures and water as the reaction medium. VTT focus areas are:
- Development of valuable solid and liquid products
- Development of more efficient processes
Raw materials for the HTC process may vary from pure biomass fractions to different waste streams and residues. The pure materials (such as cellulose or lignin) may yield specialty products while different waste streams (such as organic sludges) are typically more suitable for the manufacture of energy products.
High value end products with sustainable process
For several years now, VTT has developed hydrothermal processing for producing carbon for bulk products (e.g. fuel, soil amendment/fertilizer) and for high value end products (e.g. composites, adsorbents, nano materials, electrodes). The knowhow is related to the understanding of biomass structure and its behaviour in thermal processing, process optimization as well as wide characterisation and application testing possibilites.
VTT has ongoing research, for instance, in developing carbon nanoparticles for specific applications, valorization of different waste streams and recovering of valuable by-products and nutrients to improve the total efficiency of the process.
Extensive research facilities with skilled staff
VTT’s research facilities cover the whole chain from raw materials to the production of new carbon materials and platform chemicals utilizing hydrothermal processing technologies. The laboratories are well equipped with versatile analytical tools and suitable reactors in laboratory and semi-pilot scales.
Partners in cooperation include:
- Forest- and Agro industry
- Municipal/Industrial waste water treatment plants
- Engineering companies
- SMEs working with HTC
- End users (e.g. carbon manufacturers, chemical industry, energy companies, garden product suppliers)