Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : From lignocellulosic feedstock to advanced bio-based chemicals, materials or ethanol

Topic identifier: BBI.VC1.F1
Publication date: 19 May 2015

Types of action: BBI-IA-FLAG Bio-based Industries Innovation action - Flagship
Opening date:
19 May 2015
Deadline: 15 September 2015 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020
Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Lignocellulosic biomass is one of the most abundant resources of fixed renewable carbon on earth. It is present in resources such as woody crops, agricultural and forest residues, residues from agro-industrial processing and forest-based industries, as well as residues from conventional biomass conversion plants. While bio-based chemicals, materials and ethanol produced from food crops are already on the market, meeting market standards for a wide variety of applications, their production from lignocellulosic feedstock opens up large opportunities in terms of enhancing sustainability, avoiding land conflicts and expanding resource potential. Demonstration activities are already being pursued to exploit this vast renewable resource through the application of biotechnological, chemical or other processes. However, the challenge lies in establishing at industrial scale a first-of-a-kind, cost-effective biorefinery concept leading to the conversion of lignocellulosic feedstock into bio-based chemicals, materials and ethanol.


Demonstration of the techno-economic viability of transformation of one or multiple lignocellulosic feedstock into one of the following bio-based products/applications:

i) bioethanol targeting a production capacity of at least 50,000 ton/year. Proposals should address the valorisation of co-products and show a credible path towards becoming an integrated biorefinery concept by applying a cascading approach.

ii) diols and/or diacids as bio-based chemical building blocks targeting a production capacity of at least 5000 ton/year. Proposals should address their further conversion into sustainable biomaterials within an integrated biorefinery concept applying a cascading approach.

Proposals should pursue all possible means of industrial symbiosis and integration of actors along the whole value chain and, wherever possible, make use of existing facilities. Proposals should prove the sustainable and economical access to sufficient raw material to set up the whole value chain, and include activities to ensure the functioning/organisation of a sustainable supply chain. Proposals will assess market demand of the targeted products and will consider market-pull related activities (e.g. standardisation, consumers’ perception) aimed at facilitating their market uptake. Proposals should include a Life Cycle Analysis in order to evaluate the environmental and socio-economic performance of the developed products. Proposals are expected to verify and validate safety, quality and purity of end products to meet commercial requirements. The leading role of relevant industrial partners is considered essential to achieve the full impact.

It is considered that proposals with a total eligible budget of up to EUR 35 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals with another budget.

Expected Impact:

Expected impact:

  • Demonstration of a new local bio-based value chain maximising the use of lignocellulosic resources for the production of bio-based chemicals, materials or ethanol.
  • Opening up significant potential for job creation in rural areas. Creating green jobs and facilitating the development of entrepreneurial activities throughout the entire value chain, with advantages for the primary sector (i.e. agriculture and forest), the secondary sector (e.g. logistics, bioproduct transformation industry) and the tertiary sector;
  • Improving cost-efficiency and sustainability of bioethanol/diols/diacids as compared with conventional ones;
  • Proposals dealing with bioethanol will reach: a dry matter content in the fermentation process of less than 20%, an improved Capex and decreased energy use, specifications of the bioethanol matching those required by downstream processing and/or regulations where applicable.
  • Proposals dealing with diols and diacids will demonstrate at least 2 bio-based materials with more that 80% of bio-based content;
  • Contributing to realising the objectives of Biotechnology and/or other Key Enabling Technologies under Horizon 2020 and dedicated EU policy to address the development of scientific and technological know-how in key enabling technologies and its translation into industrial products and solutions to societal challenges.
Cross-cutting Priorities:

Cross-cutting Key-Enabling Technologies (KETs)

Topic conditions and documents

Please read carefully all provisions below before the preparation of your application.

  1. List of countries and applicable rules for funding: described in part A of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme.

  2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in part B and C of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme. 
  3. Evaluation

    3.1  Evaluation criteria and procedure, scoring and threshold: described in part H of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme, with the exceptions described in part 3.5.5 of the BBI JU Annual Work Plan 2015.

    3.2 Guide to the submission and evaluation process and the BBI JU Calls 2015 - Guide for applicants.

  4. Proposal page limits and layout: Please refer to Part B of the standard proposal template.
  5. Indicative timetable for evaluation and grant agreement:
    Information on the evaluation outcome: maximum 5 months after the proposal submission deadline.
    Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months after the proposal submission deadline.
  6. Provisions, proposal templates and evaluation forms for the type(s) of action(s) under this topic:

    BBI Innovation Action Flagship (BBI-IA-FLAG)

    Specific provisions and funding rates: described in part 3.5.7 of the BBI JU Annual Work Plan 2015
    Standard proposal template
    Standard evaluation form
    BBI JU Model Grant Agreement
    H2020 Annotated Grant Agreement
  7. Additional provisions:

    Technology readiness levels (TRL): described in Part G of the General Annexes to the EC Work Programme. 
  8. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions, and proposals must refer to measures envisaged. Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.
  9.  JTIs additional documents

    BBI JU Work Plan 2015
    BBI JU Scientific Innovation and Research Agenda (SIRA)
    Horizon 2020 Rules for participation
    BBI JU Derogation to H2020 Rules for Participation
    BBI JU Regulation of establishment 


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