Project: Innovative biotechnological methods for effective mining of secondary material

Acronym BIOMIMIC (Reference Number: ERA-MIN-2017_86)
Duration 01/05/2018 - 30/04/2020
Project Topic Metal supply is one of Europe’s biggest challenges. The Commission has identified a number of metals as critical for its industry and the employment; meaning that they are essential for high-tech, green and defence applications, while their availability is fluctuating due to politically and economically driven factors. Ironically, metals of a high economic value end-up in low technology applications, being landfilled or in hazardous wastes, posing threat to the environment and health. It is estimated that fly ash from waste-to-energy plants produced annually in Europe, contains metals of the value of 600 million euro. Another promising resource of high-value metals is red mud; a by-product of aluminium industry considered to be hazardous and that has been involved in a couple of environmental incidents. The reason for not exploiting resources like ashes and red mud is that the metals are present at low concentrations and in complex matrices. With its unique multidisciplinary consortium of problem owning and end-user industries, innovators and researchers BIOMIMIC is aiming to solve the challenge of extracting these metals, while leaving the remaining material free from toxic substances. The project will explore naturally occurring bioprocesses, namely biosulfide precipitation and biosorption. Employing beyond state-of-the-art innovations in microorganism mixtures and reactor design is expected to increase the rate of these typically slow biotechnological methods. The expected impacts of BIOMIMIC include: i) pushing EU to the forefront of sustainable processing technologies, ii) improving competitiveness through creation of added value and new jobs, iii) creating value of raw materials currently landfilled enabling better efficiency of exploitation of raw materials’ resources and iv) increasing the range and yields of recovered raw materials (including water and energy consumption) leading to reduced environmental footprint.
Website visit project website
Network ERA-MIN 2
Call ERA-MIN Joint Call 2017

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 Research Institutes of Sweden Coordinator Sweden
2 Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research Partner Germany
3 Flocazur AB Partner Sweden
4 Nordic BioEngineering AB Partner Sweden
5 Purac AB Partner Sweden
6 Aughinish Alumina Ltd Partner Ireland
7 Luleu University of Technology Partner Sweden
8 Fortum Waste Solutions Partner Sweden
9 G.E.O.S. Ingenieurgesellschft mbH Partner Germany
10 University of Limerick Partner Ireland
11 Geonardo Environmental Technologies Observer Hungary