Converting CO2 into chemicals

Title of the research project

CELBICON - “Cost-effective CO2 conversion into chemicals via combination of Capture, ELectrochemical and Biochemical CONversion technologies”

Scientific area 

Environment & Climate Action, Bio-based Industries, Energy


The main concept of CELBICON is the exploitation of waste molecules as a resource for the production of chemicals, or value added products. In particular, the goal of the project is the development of two processing lines designed for an industrial environment: one for the conversion of the CO2 into biopolymers and biomethane and the other one for the CO2 conversion into mono-terpens and lactic acid. 

Description of the research project 

CELBICON project is based on the conversion of carbon dioxide into available products for markets, by the integration of physical, electrochemical and biological techniques. In this way, the interplay among these different parts will guarantee the conversion of a small gaseous molecule, the CO2, into more complex carbon-based molecular products.

In general, the CO2 conversion process is based on:

  1. the study and the development of a carbon dioxide conversion process,
  2. The optimisation of a CO2 electrochemical conversion into intermediate chemicals (as syngas and methanol),
  3. the exploitation of biological fermentations for the final products synthesis from the sub-mentioned intermediate products.

Successively, after a complex case study, these steps will be developed by the construction and the validation of two different processing lines, in order to differentiate and guarantee a wide range of chemical products. 


Impact on society 

CELBICON was designed to propose a pragmatic solution for two of the main problems of the modern society:

  • The increase of the atmospheric CO2,
  •  The development of cost-effective farms.

At the end of its scientific speculation, the project will give to the society a real solution to overcome these types of modern difficulties by the donation of guidelines for the establishment of processing lines into a decentralized market.  


Working group @Polito 

Debora Fino, Full Professor

Nunzio Russo, Full Professor

Bernardo Ruggeri, Associate Professor

Samir Bensaid, Associate Professor

Fabio Deorsola, Assistant Professor

Simelys Hernandez, Assistant Professor

Beatrice Mongili, PhD 

Annalisa Abdel Azim, PhD

Sorani Montenegro, PhD

Albanese Pascal, Researcher

Viviana Negro, Researcher


National and International partners 

Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy, Politecnico di Torino third part)

Technische Universiteit Delft (The Nederlands)

Karlsruher Institut Fuer Technologie (Germany)

Universite de Montpellier (France)

Agencia Estatal Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (Spain)

Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Zur FOErderung Der Angewandten Forschung E.V. (Germany)

Avantium Chemicals BV (The Nederlands)

Climeworks (Switzerland)

Gaskatel gesellschaft fuer gassysteme durch katalyse und elektrochemie GmbH (Germany)

Gensoric GmbH (Germany)

HysytecH s.r.l. (Italy)

Krajete GmbH (Austria)

 CELBICON project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 679050

  • Budget: 6.211.040 euro
  • Start date: 1/03/2016
  • End date: 31/08/2019