Chemistry of Renewable Resources
This institute of the Department of Chemistry is concerned with the chemistry of renewable resources („Chemistry NAWAROS“). The research focuses on the following topics:
- Cellulose chemistry (structural chemistry, dissolution of cellulose and cellulose solvents, cellulosic fibers, aging chemistry and conservation chemistry, bleaching chemistry) and polysaccharide chemistry
- Biopolymer analytics with an emphasis on cellulose and polysaccharide analytics (molecular weight distributions, profiles of functional groups, substituent distributions, oxidative modifications, chromophore analytics)
- Chemistry and development of phenolic antioxidants (structure-property relationships, novel tocopherol derivatives, multifunctional stabilizers, phenolic extractives)
- Chemistry of biomaterials (cellulosic aerogels, lignin, natural and artificial humic substances, lignite, hydrogels)
- „Green Chemistry“ (sustainable and environmentally compatible chemical reactions, solventless, energy-saving and atom-economical reactions, microwave-supported syntheses, new reaction media)
The methods employed encompass the entire spectrum of organic synthesis with accompanying analytics (cellulosic and phenolic model compounds, cellulose derivatives, isotopic labeling, heterocyclic chemistry), structural aspects (solid-state, gel and solution NMR, EPR, crystal structure analysis) as well as specialized analytical techniques (gel permeation chromatography with multiple detection, hyphenated capillary electrophoresis).
State-of-the-art laboratories and equipment are placed at the disposal of a very active work group with members from all over the world engaged in many national and international collaborations.
As services, several aspects of advanced cellulose analytics and antioxidant chemistry are offered.
FunEnzFibres, a collaborative research project between VTT - Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd (Project leader), NMBU - Norwegian University of Life Sciences, and BOKU, will explore novel mechano-enzymatic modifications on cellulose and cellulosic fibres using LPMOs and selected hydrolases for development of high-value products in the forest industry.