The ExpandFibre R&D&I roadmap has been revised and updated with over one year left in the Programme

The ExpandFibre R&D&I roadmap has been revised and updated with over one year left in the Programme

News 17.05.2023

ExpandFibre Programme Steering Group has decided to make minor revisions and additions to the core research themes of “Sourcing & fractionation of straw” and “Other fibre products” on the ExpandFibre roadmap. The planned updates enable linking more R&D activities to ExpandFibre’s Ecosystem related to biomaterial innovations for solid wood, enhanced utilization of wood and straw processing side streams, and widening the scope of fractionation processes to also include wood in addition to straw.

Ever since kicking off the ExpandFibre R&D collaboration and Ecosystem led by Metsä Group and Fortum in May 2020, the R&D&I roadmap containing the seven core research themes of the Programme has guided the work of ExpandFibre towards accelerating the development of sustainable bioproducts.

With a bit more than one year left in the Programme and Ecosystem in May 2023, it was decided that minor revisions to two core research themes would be the perfect way to complement the current research scope and widen the field of potential bioproduct innovations. The main update to the roadmap involves widening the scope of the previous roadmap heading of “Straw and wood fibres as raw materials” to “Straw and wood as raw materials”. Also, the topic of “Sourcing and fractionation of straw” has been updated to also include fractionation technologies of woody raw materials. The “Other fibre products” research theme has also been updated to “Other fibre and wood products”.  

ExpandFibre Programme Manager Katariina Kemppainen, SVP, Group R&D at Metsä Spring Oy, explains the process behind updating the roadmap: “Gap analysis shows that the current roadmap is already quite well covered with ongoing ecosystem projects. We thought that now it is a great time to widen the scope slightly and invite even more cutting-edge research proposals and projects to the ecosystem.”

Tuomas Lehtinen, Ecosystem Lead at Business Finland shares his thoughts on the updating of the ExpandFibre roadmap: “The Ecosystem and its partnerships have been developing very well during the project, so the roadmap fine tuning at this stage of the project is even recommended”.

The Programme Managers will present the updated roadmap in full detail to the ExpandFibre community in the Ecosystem’s upcoming annual seminar on June 8th. Access the updated ExpandFibre R&D&I roadmap here.