Innovation Space BioBall
New Technologies for the Utilization of Biogenic Material and Waste Streams
The Innovation Space BioBall promotes technologies for the material use of biogenic by-products and waste streams available in the region. In particular, bio-based side and waste streams from the private and municipal economy are to be tapped as raw materials for food, chemical, pharmaceutical, and energy products. The Innovation Space BioBall focuses on the challenges and opportunities within a densely populated, industrialized metropolitan region such as the Frankfurt Rhine-Main region. Partners for the activities are private and municipal companies and scientific institutions from the region and all of Germany.
As a bio-based, sustainable economy only has a chance to become reality if it is also widely accepted by the population, the involvement of society in our Innovation Space is essential in order to discuss novel technologies – and also potential tradeoffs – with all actors in society.
The Metropolitan Region Frankfurt Rhine-Main
The Frankfurt Rhine-Main metropolitan region extends over southern Hesse, Bavaria (Lower Franconia) and Rhineland-Palatinate (Rheinhessen). With around 5.7 million inhabitants, it is one of the economically strongest regions in Germany. In their densely populated and economically prosperous regions, large amounts of carbon-containing residues and waste streams are generated. These are roughly calculated:
- 900,000 tons of biowaste, including 200,000 tons of food waste
- 146,000 tons of sewage sludge (dry matter)
- 125,000 tons of biogas (CH4/CO2) from fermentation
- 90,000 tons of lignin from paper production
Additionally, there are other biogenic material flows from industry and neighboring regions. So far, these material streams have been used incompletely or not at all. Biowaste and sewage sludge – the most important waste streams in any large metropolitan region – are at best composted, spread on agricultural land, or used for energy production. The CO2 generated in biogas plants goes unused into the atmosphere. The BioBall Innovation Space wants to recycle these material streams and close the loops of raw materials.
The Frankfurt Rhine-Main metropolitan region is the model region in which new technologies and processes are initiated and tested. The long-term goal is to scale the results, procedures, and technologies established within the framework of BioBall and to convey them to comparable metropolitan regions.