Cellulose micro- and nanofibrils (CMNF) manufacturing - financial and risk assessment

Camilla Abbati de Assis, Maria Celeste Iglesias, Michael Bilodeau, Donna Johnson, Richard Phillips, Maria Soledad Peresin, E. M.Ted Bilek, Orlando J. Rojas, Richard Venditti, Ronalds Gonzalez*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


Conversion economics, risk, and financial analyses for an industrial facility manufacturing cellulose micro- and nanofibrils (CMNF) from wood pulp is presented. Process data is based on mass and energy balances from a pilot facility in the University of Maine. Here, CMNF is produced from untreated wood pulp by using disk refining, with an assumed production capacity of 50 t (dry metric ton equivalent) per day. Stand-alone and co-location manufacturing facilities were simulated and assessed. Minimum product selling prices (MPSP, estimated to achieve a 16% hurdle rate) for different scenarios ranged from USD 1893/t CMNF to USD 2440/t CMNF (dry equivalent). Pulp and energy consumption were identified as major cost drivers. Consequently, it was found that the use of alternative feedstock, in addition to co-location configuration, can reduce MPSP by 37%. Since estimated MPSP of CMNF is lower than cellulose nanocrystals (CNC) – both estimated to achieve a 16% hurdle rate, we believe market adoption of CMNF in the near term is more promising, regardless of specific applications. This study provides state of the art business intelligence information on the conversion economics, risk, and financial analyses for CMNF manufacturing. Thus, the data represents valuable information to entrepreneurs, R&D scientists, and product developers who plan to adopt CMNF in their processes and products.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-264
Number of pages14
JournalBiofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • cellulose micro- and nanofibrils
  • cellulose microfibrils
  • cellulose nanofibrils
  • CMF
  • CMNF
  • CNF
  • conversion economics
  • manufacturing cost
  • nanofibrillated cellulose
  • quantitative risk analysis


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