Welcome to the Bioproduct Chemistry and Engineering Research Unit (BCE) at Western Regional Research Center (WRRC), where application of agriculture product to improve the environment is explored. Research is directed toward the use of grain products and crop residues for biobased products and biofuels. They include the following:
§ Develop methods of processing starch composites into molded articles.
§ Develop methods of processing agricultural fibers into biodegradable packaging, building materials and slurry-molded products.
Apply enzymes to improve grain-to-ethanol (biofuels) fermentation conversion, as well as create conversion processes that are effective at lower temperatures.
Additionally, BCE is investigating "environmentally friendly" water-soluble polymers to use as an additive to reduce erosion-induced soil losses.
The mission of the Bioproduct Chemistry and Engineering (BCE) Research Unit is to provide technical leadership in capturing the total value of agricultural resources for biofuels and biobased products. Core technologies include improved enzyme development for biomass utilization via directed molecular evolution and applied microbiology, improved grain milling, pretreatment and bioproduct isolation via optimized separation engineering, and application of advanced processing technology for converting cereal starches, straws, and under-utilized biomass sources into novel bioproducts, such as packaging, building materials and high-performance nanocomposites. Solutions are transferred to technical partners, promoting the use of renewable agricultural resources for sustainable biofuels and bioproducts.