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ARS Home » Plains Area » Lubbock, Texas » Cropping Systems Research Laboratory » Cotton Production and Processing Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #332897

Research Project: Enhancing the Profitability and Sustainability of Upland Cotton, Cottonseed, and Agricultural Byproducts through Improvements in Pre- and Post-Harvest Processing

Location: Cotton Production and Processing Research

Title: Bioinspiration and Biomimicry: Possibilities for Cotton Byproducts

item Holt, Gregory

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/1/2016
Publication Date: 3/25/2016
Citation: Holt, G.A. 2016. Bioinspiration and Biomimicry: Possibilities for Cotton Byproducts. Meeting Abstract. Online:

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The byproducts from cotton gins have commonly been referred to as cotton gin trash or cotton gin waste primarily because the lint and seed were the main focus of the operation and the byproducts were a financial liability that did not have a consistent market. Even though the byproducts were called “trash” or “waste” they are comprised of cotton plant materials such as lint, leaf, sticks and stems, and carpel. Over the past several years, there have been numerous research endeavors to find markets for or add value to the byproducts to enhance revenue to the processing facility and/or the producer. This presentation focuses on several products produced from cotton byproducts and discusses the pros and cons of their implementation. The presentation ends with a new bio-composite, which has been successfully implemented in industry utilizing fungus mycelium to integrate a plant fiber matrix to create a product for a variety of uses. The idea for the new biocomposite was born from observation of the natural world and encourages bioinspiration and/or biomimicry as a platform for utilizing natural fibers for future composites. Current and potential uses of the mycelium/natural fiber biocomposite will be discussed.