UCL Department of Biochemical Engineering


Dr Frank Baganz awarded £87k by Newton Fund

17 February 2017

Senior lecturer and Chair of the Doctoral Committee at The UCL Department of Biochemical Engineering, Dr Frank Baganz, has been awarded a grant for his project “Sustainable biotransformation process to exploit anaerobic digestion sludge.”

Manufacturing sugar results in a by-product called vinasse, that can be converted to biogas leading to a anaerobic digestion (AD) sludge. This sludge is produced in vast quantities and is causing significant environmental issues in Columbia. Dr Frank Baganz has been developing expertise within The Department of Biochemical Engineering at UCL in developing biotransformation processes that have the potential to find a sustainable solution to generating energy from biomass feedstocks.

The Newton Fund grant has been awarded to Dr Baganz (£87,000) for a collaborative project with ICESI University in Columbia to develop a process to produce biodiesel from microalgae grown on AD sludge. The project aims to generate clean energy sources and low-cost, high-quality animal feed in the short term, as well as reducing the environmental impact of the build-up of industrial waste. In the longer term the project will help to develop industrial biotechnology in Columbia through collaborative research between ICESI and UCL.

About the Newton Fund

The Newton Fund builds scientific and innovation partnerships with 16 partner countries to support their economic development and social welfare, and to develop their research and innovation capacity for long-term sustainable growth. It has a total UK Government investment of £735 million up until 2021, with matched resources from the partner countries.

The Newton Fund is managed by the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and delivered through 15 UK Delivery Partners, which include the Research Councils, the UK Academies, the British Council, Innovate UK and the Met Office.

For further information visit the Newton Fund website (www.newtonfund.ac.uk) and follow via Twitter: @NewtonFund.