A big step on the road to lignin-based aerogels

Material for test purposes can obtain highly porous insulating boards with excellent insulating properties - industrial

Researchers from the Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg (TU HH) successfully mainly lignin-based aerogels have produced and processed for insulation panels. Two spin-offs of the TU HH promote the market introduction of the material after the end of the project, them make lignin and aerogels in a pilot scale interested companies available.

Resorcin-Lignin-Formaldehyd-Aerogelplatte. Quelle: Joana Gil, TUHH.
Resorcin-Lignin-Formaldehyd-Aerogelplatte. Quelle: Joana Gil, TUHH.

Aerogels are solid, highly porous materials with low density and low thermal conductivity. Still, the production of pure lignin aerogels is not possible. A team led by the Professor Irina Smirnova from the TU HH is closer to this goal but a great piece. The scientists used the lignin made book residual wood and wheat straw, which was won in the Consortium using two environmentally friendly methods of information – the Organosolv-and the Aquasolv method. Using five different gelling strategies then converting the Lignins in aerogels. One of the most successful approaches led to hybrid lignin polyurethane aerogels with density adjustable between 50 and 250 kg / m3. The mass-related content of lignin is 78 percent, the procedure has been scaled up in the pilot. Insulation boards from this Aero gel type reach a thermal conductivity of 24 mW / m K · and significantly exceeded the insulating properties of polystyrene or Rockwool. And lignin-based resorcinol formaldehyde aerogels with surface area of 500 m2/ g, and a wide range of adjustable properties are promising. Lignin-based, they are up to 70 percent.

Two spin-offs in the future dedicated to the topic of lignin-based aerogels: BioMP (www.thebiomp.de) brings together expertise in the field of hot water hydrolysis and production of lignin to the sampling and processing. Aerogelex (www.aerogelex.com) manufactures various types of organic aerogels and offers lignin PU Aero gel plates for industrial testing.

The project “material use of lignin: Nanoporöse materials” was promoted by the Federal Ministry of food and Agriculture (BMEL) about the project carrier specialist agency renewable raw materials e. V. (FNR). The final report is available on fnr.de 22018312 available at the grant number. On the project were in addition to the HH TU the Fraunhofer-Institute for chemical biotechnological processes (CBP), University of Vienna, the Bavarian Center for applied energy research and the company Dräger safety and Loick organic value substances involved.


Fachagentur Nachwachsende Rohstoffe, press release, 2018-07-10.


Technische Universität Hamburg-Harburg


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