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Pilot Programme

Topics of the Pilot Programme

The objective of the ILI Pilot Programme is to accelerate the transition of lignin applications from development to commercial implementation.

For achieving that goal, several actions are done in parallel:

  • An inventory of the activities being part of the Pilot Programme is established. This includes as much activities from ILI members as from other stakeholders being part of the network. Everybody, also non-members, can submit activities to[javascript protected email address]
  • The submitted activities are analysed by the ILI staff and additional information is requested if necessary.
  • The stage of advancement of every activity is and documented in a summary paper. As this process is very time consuming only a limited number of such papers is so far available. For that purpose, ILI is following a priority list in which the applications with the biggest market potential are treated first. The resulting papers are sent to all members and are also available under the ‘Progress’ section (link). For each existing summary, new information is integrated as soon as available which leads to a new version of the summary.
  • A very important point is the identification of research needs and other barriers for every application. This is done informally in the everyday activity of the ILI staff by taking profit of all contacts with the stakeholders. And it is formalised as a part of the above-mentioned summaries.
  • ILI is continuously supporting its members in all activities that are part of the Pilot Programme by submitting suggestions how the research can be improved. These suggestions can be technical but also with regard to the creation of new partnerships, e.g., lignin producers (most adapted types of lignin) for research institutions or know-how from research institutions for improving the research of companies (lignin producers but also lignin end users).
  • Finally, ILI is also triggering financial support to the most important and promising researches if needed. One of the goals of the ILI Pilot Programme is to work out a well-documented catalogue of recommendations helping financial stakeholders (which can be industrial companies or financial organisations) to decide in which research to get involved.
  • Thermosets
  • Speciality Chemicals
  • Slow release coatings
  • Health applications
  • Carbon applications
  • Composites
  • Miscellaneous


  • PF-resins with lignin content of 50-100% (Resoles and Novolacs)
  • Epoxies
  • Polyurethanes
  • Green replacement of diisocyanates
  • Increased reactivity (demethylolation chemical and enzymatic, grafting of functional groups, catalysts)
  • Lower the molecular weight (ultrafiltration, fractionation, depolymerisation)

Speciality Chemicals

  • UV blocker (in plastic films, in cosmetics, in textiles)
  • Inhibition of thermal degradation (thermoplasts)
  • Emulsifiers (cosmetics and industrial)
  • Antioxidant in materials (polyolefins etc.)
  • Antimicrobial agent
  • Nanostabilisers in asphalt and bitumen
  • Barriers in packaging
  • Concrete plasticisers
  • Dispersants of dyes and other surfactants
  • Heavy metal binding in soils
  • Polymer additive for thermoplasts
  • Cosmetics

Slow Release Coatings

  • Fertilisers
  • Biomedical encapsulation
  • Pesticides

Health Applications

  • Antioxidants
  • Antibacterial
  • Antiviral
  • Antifungi
  • Digestion regulation

Carbon Applications

  • Activated carbons
  • Carbon black
  • Carbon fibres
  • Carbon nano fibers
    • Active electrodes in batteries
    • Separators in supercapacitors
    • Hydrogen storage
    • High temperature insulation
    • Biomedical
    • Textile
    • Filtration
  • Biochar


  • Wood polymer composites (WPC)
  • Lignin and thermoplastic composites
  • Lignin cellulose composites
  • Carbon nano fibre web


  • Asphalt Bitumen
  • Adhesives
  • Hot Melt Adhesives
  • Aerogels and Carbogels for electrochemical applications
  • Binderless Fibreboards
  • Carpets
  • Tires and Rubber
  • Coatings
  • Leather
  • Packaging materials
  • Membranes
  • Bioplastics
  • Sealants
  • Transportation and aviation fuels
  • Nanolignins