This project aims to revive Ontario’s forest, agriculture and manufacturing sectors towards sustainable growth. This will be achieved by transforming the residual biomass and co-products from these sectors into functional, industrial materials. These materials will be used to design and manufacture innovative lightweight products, industrial coatings, and flexible electronic smart devices using sustainable materials (nanocellulose and lignin) from Ontario’s residual biomass, and strengthening Ontario’s agro-, forest, and industrial sectors with this clean manufacturing approach which will result in a reduction of CO2 emission. A multi- disciplinary team of researchers from six different Ontario academic institutions has been assembled. The team possesses complementary expertise in, chemical engineering, polymer and materials science and engineering, mechanical engineering, industrial chemistry, surface chemistry, biomaterials manufacturing, wood chemistry and engineering, life-cycle analysis and bio-economics.
This ORF project aims to develop biobased lightweight and sustainable industrial bioproducts through novel and clean processing technologies that utilize superior performance of both the cellulose nanofibres and lignin from Ontario’s bioresources. The proposed program will provide an excellent opportunity to better use Ontario’s underutilized agro- and forest resources to produce products and add value, thereby increasing the competitiveness and the number of employees per unit of the biobased economy. The outcomes of this research support new product lines and opportunities which combine Ontario’s existing strengths in the forestry and agricultural sectors to create biobased industries and boost regional development.