Miscanthus biomass is pretreated thermochemically and the cellulose and hemicellulose is seperated from the lignin-rich fraction. While the lignin-rich fraction can be utilized for other applications e.g. production of phenols, the cellulose and hemicellulose is hydrolysed into sugars and finally converted into Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) in another thermochemical reaction. HMF is a very promising renewable platform chemical, which can be used to produce a range of chemical products, including various bioplastics.
To completely utilize the biomass, the residues of the HMF production are intended to be treated in an anaerobic digestion plant, which allows both recovery of energy and recycling of minerals.