BIOMATA, an international laboratory dedicated to biobased products

BIOMATA, an international laboratory associated with the Scion Institute of New Zealand dedicated to biobased products

The BIOMATA International associated laboratory will provide fundamental and applied knowledge using resources from plant biomass for the development of biosourced materials for the design of materials of the future. The research carried out is part of a circular economy approach, which minimizes the ecological footprint of manufacturing processes and integrates the end-of-life of products, right from their design phase.

The creation of the new international associated laboratory BIOMATA (Biorefinery for sustainable Materials and Technical Application) was formalized on Thursday, March 30, with the signature of Philippe Mauguin, CEO of INRAE, and Helen Anderson, President of SCION, as well as those of Philippe Augé, President of the University of Montpellier, and Carole Sinfort, Director of the Institut Agro Montpellier.

(From left to right, top to bottom) Dr. Ayesha Verrall, New Zealand Minister of Scientific Research and Innovation, Marie-Joo Le Guen and Claire Mayer-Laigle, LIA BIOMATA project leaders, Julian Elder, CEO of SCION, Laurence Beau, French Ambassador to New Zealand, Helen Anderson, Chair of SCION's Board of Directors, and Philippe Mauguin, President and CEO of INRAE.

BIOMATA brings together the "Materials, Engineering and Manufacturing" and "Chemistry and Physics" research groups of the New Zealand Forestry Research Institute SCION, the joint research unit Agropolymer Engineering and Emerging Technologies in Montpellier under the cotutelle INRAE-University of Montpellier-Institut Agro, the Biopolymers, Interactions and Assemblies research unit in Nantes and the Fractionation of Agroresources and Environment joint research unit in Reims, 3 research units under the INRAE's TRANSFORM division.
In particular, the groups and laboratories involved in BIOMATA are working on the development of biorefinery schemes in order to limit the environmental impact of manufacturing processes while remaining economically competitive. This global approach aims to develop processes for the valorisation of a whole plant resource by considering a panel of applications, according to the properties of the different parts of the plant material, and by combining different transformation processes (chemical, physical and biological) to minimise inputs and waste.
Research projects are focused on 3 areas:
The research will be conducted through synergistic studies in the facilities of the different laboratories. It will include joint methodological developments for the characterization and processing of advanced biobased materials, co-supervision of trainees, PhD students and post-doctoral fellows, reciprocal exchanges of researchers in the different partner laboratories, the organization of seminars with a focus on videoconferencing in an environmentally responsible manner in order to take into account the distance between France and New Zealand, and scientific mediation activities on the topics covered.

Modification date : 11 September 2023 | Publication date : 02 April 2023 | Redactor : MW