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About Bio-Oils Research (BOR)

Mission Statement

Scientists in the Bio‐oils Research Unit (BOR) develop new commodity plant oils and commercially viable industrial bio‐based products from new and existing vegetable oils that are technically and economically competitive with or superior to comparable existing commercial petroleum‐derived materials.

Strategic Goals

Conversion of Vegetable Oils to Industrial  Products:

Improve the properties of vegetable oils and  their components so they can be used as industrial materials such as printing inks, coatings, lubricants, hydraulic fluids, greases, polymers, composites, surfactants, and adhesives. 

Biobased Lubricants:

Determine the friction and wear properties of biopolymers for use in lubricant formulations; determine the reaction mechanism and products of the surface interaction process; and develop predictive models to obtain desired products. 

Industrial Products from New Crops:

Identify new sources of raw materials from alternative crops; devise new analytical methods to analyze components; and develop optimum seed processing and industrial processes to recover value‐added products from new crops.

Primary focus

The primary focus of the BOR unit is product development from new industrial crops that possess certain agronomic and other beneficial features not found in traditional commodity crops.

Interdisciplinary expertise in chemistry, chemical engineering and agricultural sciences is used to generate new, commercially‐viable materials from agricultural feedstocks. This product development spans the full spectrum from discovery of new crops, their agronomic development and chemical conversion to industrially significant materials.

Equipment and expertise is available for planting and harvesting new crops, extraction of seed oil and refining and converting crude seed oils into highervalue bio-based materials and fuels.  Additionally, the Unit contains an extensive collection of highly specialized instrumentation that is used to measure composition and physical properties of fuels, lubricants and other bio-based products.

These individual areas of expertise and equipment are leveraged in concert to generate a unique capacity for truly innovative breakthroughs.



The Bio-oils Research is located in Peoria, IL and is part of the Midwest Area.
The Research Leader is Steven Cermak.
Phone: 309-681-6533
1815 N. University Street
Peoria, IL 61604