Ahoy: Multi-purpose plant for renewable raw materials use in the Danube port
3/1/2024 Machinery Article

Ahoy: Multi-purpose plant for renewable raw materials use in the Danube port

The multi-purpose BioCampus MultiPilot (BMP) demonstration plant is being built in the Danube port of Straubing-Sand. Processes for utilising renewable raw materials for chemical production will there be further developed. Glatt Ingenieurtechnik has now been commissioned with the detail engineering. The Weimar based company will also supply the higher-level process technology for the plant. The BMP will be used to further develop, scale up and optimise industrial biotechnology processes up to a pre-industrial scale. The plant is scheduled to go into operation at the beginning of 2025.

Rendering of the multi-purpose BioCampus MultiPilot (BMP) demonstration plant from the outside and inside In future, customers from research and industry will be able to use the multi-purpose demonstration facility to optimise and scale up industrial biotech processes. The focus is on the utilisation of lignocellulosic raw materials. 

The project, with an investment volume of 90 million euros, focuses on the utilisation of renewable raw materials. The BMP plant is intended to support the research transfer of products and processes to an industrial scale. Glatt Ingenieurtechnik has already conducted the basic engineering. In the next stage of the project, 3D CAD planning across all trades and Building Information Modelling (BIM) techniques will be used as part of the detail engineering. Glatt will plan and supply various process technology systems, media supply, process automation and comprehensive safety technology. The plant technology will be integrated in close cooperation with the construction company Swietelsy AG and two specialised equipment suppliers.

Start-ups and large corporations develop biochemical processes

Renewable raw materials are becoming increasingly important in the chemical industry. On the one hand, they can replace increasingly scarce fossil raw materials and, on the other, help to achieve climate targets. The BMP, which was commissioned by the Zweckverband Hafen Straubing-Sand (ZVH) as initiator and project owner, will focus on the biochemical conversion of lignocellulosic raw materials such as straw, wood, or paper. The production scale is a maximum of 25 cubic metres. The plant will be equipped with flexible processing technology. In future, it will be used by international research institutions, start-ups and large corporations. In addition to the plant technology, the special-purpose association also offers them services such as process development and the provision of partners from industry and research. Pre-tests by companies planning their own demonstrators or commercial plants are also possible.

Sustainable concepts for the raw materials transition

In future, the multi-purpose facility will complement other facilities at the site, such as the Competence Centre for Renewable Resources (KoNaRo). It thus enhances the BioCampus Straubing, a subsidiary of the special-purpose association, which acts as the operator of the new plant. In the coming years, there are plans to expand the technology and start-up centre there and increase support for start-ups. In this way, viable solutions can be developed in future to support the bio-based economy and thus the raw materials transition.

Port operator promotes bioeconomy

The port of Straubing-Sand is a Bavarian freight port on the Danube with rail connection. It is part of the Straubing-Sand industrial park, which is home to transport-intensive companies. However, the operators not only focus on cargo handling and logistics, but also on innovations from the bioeconomy - with the 12-hectare BioCampus, including the multi-purpose facility being built.


Ulla Reutner

Dr. Ulla Reutner

Chemist and freelance specialised journalist