Obtain an advanced knowledge of the sources of biomass available for liquid biofuels production and the range of technologies used for conversion of biomass into biofuels. Read more Read less

The course covers characterization of biomass and biofuels, conversion processes and existing technologies, and applications of biofuels including their use in alternative engines.

At a glance

  • Dates
    • Please enquire for course dates
  • DurationFive days
  • LocationCranfield campus
  • Cost£1,700 The course fee includes refreshments and lunch during the day. Accommodation is not included and must be booked separately. 10% discount applies if booked 8 weeks in advance. 10% discount for 3rd and subsequent delegates from the same company/site. Discounts can be combined.

Course structure

The Biofuels and Biorefining course is held over one week. The course included theoretical lectures which are complemented by practical tutorials. All delegates will receive a Certificate of Attendance at the end of the course.

What you will learn

On successful completion of this course you will be able to:

  • Identify the range of biomass resources available for liquid biofuels production,
  • Evaluate a range of technologies available for liquid biofuels production from biomass and
    analyse the potential for future reduction in costs through technological development,
  • Explain the main theoretical concepts and practical implementation associated to biofuels engineering systems,
  • Get familiar with the concept of biorefinery and critically evaluate the potential of biorefining processes.

Core content

Raw materials for liquid biofuels production, characterization and assessment:

  • Biofuel feedstocks and characteristics: starch- and sugar-derived biomass, oleaginous-based biomass, lignocellulosic, biomass, and algae,
  • Sugar platform,
  • Fatty acid platform,
  • Syngas platform,

First generation of biofuels:

  • Bioethanol and ETBE production,
  • Enzymes for fermentation,
  • Microbial modelling of bioethanol: microbial growth models, kinetic rare expression, temperature effects,
  • Bioreactor operation and design for bioethanol production,

Biodiesel production

  • Biodiesel production technologies: biochemical, and catalytic and non-catalytic chemical processes,
  • Biodiesel production: biochemical aspects,
  • Biodiesel production: chemistry and thermodynamic aspects.

Second generation of biofuels:

  • Thermochemical routes: Biomass-to-Liquids,
  • Biochemical routes: Hydrolysis processes.

Third generation of biofuels:

  • Recovery of high-value chemicals from algae,
  • Introduction to Hydrothermal Liquefaction.

Biofuels and their application in engines

  • Standardization of liquid biofuels,
  • Use of biofuels in engines.     


  • Classification of Biorefineries,
  • Economic, social and environmental impacts of biorefining,
  • Commercial biorefineries.

Upgrade to a professional qualification

This short course is a module of the MSc in Biofuels Process Engineering.

Who should attend

The course will be of particular interest to process, project and consultant engineers involved in bioenergy, petrochemical and chemical industries. The course would be also of benefit for researchers who need to understand the background of their research, and managers who want to understand technical issues to aid decision making in the biofuels sector.


Dr Raffaella Villa

Accommodation options and prices

This is a non-residential course. If you would like to book accommodation on campus, please contact Mitchell Hall or Cranfield Management Development Centre directly. Further information regarding our accommodation on campus can be found here.

Alternatively you may wish to make your own arrangements at a nearby hotel.

Location and travel

Cranfield University is situated in Bedfordshire close to the border with Buckinghamshire. The University is located almost midway between the towns of Bedford and Milton Keynes and is conveniently situated between junctions 13 and 14 of the M1.

London Luton, Stansted and Heathrow airports are 30, 90 and 90 minutes respectively by car, offering superb connections to and from just about anywhere in the world.

For further location and travel details

Location address

Cranfield University
College Road
MK43 0AL

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.