Biobased polymers and composites team

BIO team



Tatiana Budtova


Research staff:

Sijze Buwalda, Patrick Navard (emeritus), Séverine Boyer, Michel Vincent



Thierry Colin


Administrative assistant:

Sylvie Massol


Research areas :

Chemical physics and processing of biobased polymers:
    • Polymer and concrete reinforced by vegetal fillers
    • Bio-aerogels
    • Polysaccharide solutions and gels
    • Bioplastics


Applications :

Various types of materials for buildings, transport, packaging, …

homepage équipe BIO CEMEF

Main objectives:

The research objective is to use fundamental knowledge on biobased polymers to develop new materials with new functions related to four areas:

a) polysaccharide solutions,
b) bio-aerogels,
c) composites and

PhD students:

Lucile Druel, Sophie Groult

-->     a new position is open on 3D printing of bio-aerogels [pdf]


Post-doctoral researchers:

 Jordi Girones, Loan Vo, Fangxin Zou


Projects :

  • BFF : Biomass for the Future (BFF, 2012-2019, has the goal to establish local value chains for miscanthus and sorghum biomass and todevelop new dedicated varieties and cropping systems for sustainable production of lignocellulosic biomass. The role of CEMEF is to study the processing of polymer composites and concrete annd to relate the application properties to the histological and phenotypal characteristics of different genotypes.

  • EPNOE: The European Polysaccharide Network of Excellence (EPNOE, a network composed of about 40 universitis, research rganizations and companies in Europe. Its aim is to organize education and basic and applied and research. CEMEF is coordinating EPNOE since its establishment in 2003.

  • NANOHYBRIDS: (a European project, 2015-2019, The goal of the project is to develop organic and hybrid organic/inorganic aerogels in the form of beads for various industrial applications such as food, adsorption and personal care. The role of CEMEF is to synthesize bio-aerogels based on cellulose with controlled shape, size and properties.

  • GDR Liquides Ioniques et Polymères (LIPs) – French network on Ionic Liquids and Polymers (2013-2016, 2017-2020, The goal of this network is to regroup scientific communities working in the area of ionic liquids and polymers in order to work together on the correlations between the structure of ionic liquids and their impact on polymer processing and properties. The role of CEMEF is to animate the topic “Ionic liquids for polymer processing”



Polymer processing machines (extrusion, injection), nitrogen adsorption for the determination of specific surface area, laboratory for making concrete, rheo-optics (morphology of mixtures, interfacial tension, behaviour of natural fibers and swollen starch granules, dispersion of agglomerates in biopolymer solutions, …).

Research directions:

- Polysaccharide solutions and gels

- Bio-aerogels

- Composites

    • Polymer composites with biomass-based fillers
    • Concrete composites with biomass
    • Inorganic composite aerogels reinforced by natural fibers
    • All-polymer composites

- Bioplastic blends




Polysaccharides, cellulose, dissolution, rhéologie, composites polymères, agro-bétons , aérogels, fibres végétales



Academic contacts:

  • Institut National de la Recherche agronomique (INRA)
  • PERSEE (MINES ParisTech)
  • University of Aalto (Finland)
  • University of Leeds (UK)
  • P.Poni Institut de Composés Macromoléculaires (Romania)



Industrial contacts:

PSA, Calcia, EDF, Faurecia, RISE (Innventia)



Recent achievement:

Bio-aerogels: new members of the family of thermal superinsulating materials.


Bio-aerogels are ultra-light and nanostructured materials based on polysaccharides. Recently we discovered that bio-aerogels based on starch and pectin posess thermal conductivity lower than that of air, 0.018-0.020 W/m.K, and are thus thermal superinsulating materials. These bio-aerogels are 100% biobased.


The work on therma superinsulating pectin and starch got awards from ADEME (French agency for Energy and Environment, 2014) in the grade Innovation Techniques for Environment and from “Innovation - Prix Imagin’Maïs » (2017), respectively.

Contact: Tatiana Budtova


Publications : 2014 - June 2017 

The three past years of BIO publications



Interactions with other CEMEF teams:

  • RMP and MPI on crystallisation of polymers in the presence of lignocellulose
  • RMP on the preparation, processing and rheology of polymer composites with natural fibers


B.P. 207 - 06904 Sophia Antipolis Cedex
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