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CCEI announces renewable chemicals research

April 1, 2014--The Catalysis Center for Energy Innovation (CCEI), a U.S. Department of Energy-Energy Frontier Research Center led by the University of Delaware, has announced a two-year program with ExxonMobil to research renewable chemicals from biomass.

The research will focus on converting lignocellulosic (non-food) biomass such as trees and grasses to polymers that are identical to existing petrochemical products.

Research strategies to replace fossil fuel feedstocks for polymers have initially focused on new chemicals derived from biomass that have the same function but new structure. However, functional-replacement chemicals for new polymers frequently have physical properties that can make processing challenging and can be expensive to develop into new products.