Research Center for Industrial Biotechnology
Given the increasing scarcity of fossil fuels, industrial biotechnology (“white biotechnology”) will not only play a key role in the sustainable manufacture of chemical products in the distant future. In industrial biotechnology, the focus is on renewable raw materials with the objective of selectively transforming these into chemical products using biological catalysts. Through its Research Center for White Biotechnology on the research campus in Garching, the TUM is establishing a strong, interdisciplinary research and training focus in this area.
Researching new biocatalysts and developing innovative production processes based on these biocatalysts is the goal of the TUM’s new Research Center for White Biotechnology, which works across a range of disciplines and academic departments. Nine professors from three science and engineering academic departments at the TUM work together in the following areas in this Center: biochemical engineering, selective separation technology, system biotechnology, industrial biocatalysis, biotechnology, biochemistry, microbiology, biological chemistry and the chemistry of biogenic raw materials.
The technical facilities for research, teaching and technology transfer at the Research Center for White Biotechnology include a screening lab in Weihenstephan (where the TUM has a third campus) and a recently established Pilot Plant for White Biotechnology in Garching. The TUM and the Federal State of Bavaria have invested EUR 4 million in building and equipping this plant, which is unique in the international academic landscape. The Pilot Plant for White Biotechnology offers researchers access to new biocatalysts and bioproducts and provides students with practical training in the area. Fermenters with a capacity of up to 1,000 liters and the relevant facilities for the reprocessing of products allow researchers to examine the scaling up of processes from laboratory to pilot scale. Working together with industry partners, this forms the basis for successful technology transfer.
For further information about the Research Center for White Biotechnology please see here.