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Biomass Manufacturing

NREL's biomass research goes beyond chemicals and fuel manufacturing, crosscutting other energy-intensive industries such as forest products manufacturing, food and beverage manufacturing, and other related industries.

A photo of two researchers examining a colorful 3-D molecular model.


NREL supports advanced manufacturing through various biomass-related capabilities and projects.

Left: Molecular model of individual chains of hemicellulose (purple and red sticks representation) interacting with a cellulose microfibril (green surface, with chain ends shown in green and red sticks). Right: Snapshot of cellulose microfibril (green surface representation) complexed with galactoglucomannan (GGM) chains (various colors) following 300 ns MD simulation. Bound GGM residues are shown in solid surface model, and unbound GGM residues are shown in stick representation. Hydroxide ions (dissociated from NaOH and responsible for peeling of sugars from polysaccharide chain ends) are shown as spheres (red: oxygen, white: hydrogen).

Pulp and Paper Manufacturing

NREL employs advanced molecular high-performance computer simulations to improve the efficiency of kraft pulp yield and help innovate the American pulp and paper industry.

A photo of plastic bottles.

U.S. Department of Energy's BOTTLE Research Consortium

Bio-Optimized Technologies to keep Thermoplastics out of Landfills and the Environment (BOTTLE™) transforms plastic pollution through early-stage plastic recycling and upcycling research and development. NREL is helping to support these efforts, along with experts from industry, academia, and other national labs.