Research Thesis Topic
Succinic acid production from food waste
Succinic acid is a significant, small chemical building block or platform chemical used in the manufacture of polymers, resins, food and pharmaceuticals, among other products. Fossil fuel-derived succinic acid was considered a speciality chemical, but as a result of price competiveness and renewable feedstocks, bio-based succinic acid is now addressing a larger volume commodity market. The global succinic acid market is about 90,000 tpa, of which two thirds is expected to be produced from renewable feedstocks. Demand for bio-succinic acid, driven by applications such as intermediates, solvents, polyurethanes, and plasticizers and coatings, is anticipated to grow strongly. The addressable market for bio-succinic acid could be worth up to US$7.5 billion in new and existing applications, and production capacity has been expanding from 3,000 tpa in 2011 to 50,000 tpa in 2013. This project will investigate the production of succinic acid from local food waste and agri-resources which can reduce national dependence on imported petrochemical energy and plastics, as well as stimulate regional economies.
- School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
- Chemical Engineering
- Environmental Biotechnology
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