In the process industry, downstream processes are the steps with the highest consumption of energy and resources in industrial operations. Moreover, the integration of new processes often requires a large portion of the CAPEX and OPEX. To significantly enhance the competitiveness of the European process industry and to contribute to Europe’s goal of a clean and liveable environment, it is highly desired to have a very broadly applicable concept for an efficient integration of downstream operations in the overall process chain.

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The MACBETH consortium provides a breakthrough technology by combining catalytic synthesis with the corresponding separation units in a single highly efficient catalytic membrane reactor (CMR).

This disruptive technology can reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of large volume industrial process by up to 35 %. Additionally, resource and energy efficiency will be increased by up to 70%. The revolutionary new reactor design will not only guarantee substantially smaller and safer production plants but has also a tremendous competitive advantage since CAPEX is decreased by up to 50% and OPEX by up to 80%.

To achieve this, the MACBETH consortium combines the catalytic synthesis step with the highly efficient separation step via a tailor-made membrane. The predecessor EU funded projects

and further fundamental developments have laid a strong basis by showing the proof of concept for CMRs at TRL 5.

Successful pilot plants have been operated for highly relevant and large-scale processes: i) Hydroformylation (HYFO), ii) Hydrogen production (H2) and iii) Propane dehydrogenation (PDH).

Key members of these consortiums have now joined forces in MACBETH to bring CMR to the level of TRL 7 and build the basis to move forward for commercialisation of the three novel technologies. Moreover, the knowledge and experiences from the three successful European projects provides the basis for tailor-made CMR solutions broadly applicable at significantly different conditions in almost any sector of the process industry requiring separation after catalytic synthesis.

To demonstrate the exploitation potential, MACBETH will extend the CMR technology to the field of biotechnology, as most biotechnological reactions involve the use of bacteria or enzymes, which are special types of catalysts. In this field, the selective enzymatical cleavage of fatty acids is of particularly high commercial interest. Based on alarge variety of already established building blocks (such as catalysts, membranes, support materials and reactor concepts) a demo plant for bio-catalytical oil cleavage (BOC) will be developed, showing the commercial applicability of CMR in biotechnology for the first time.

To take a further step forward and to extend the benefits of CMR technology to other sectors, a European competence center will be established. At the end of the project this will culminate in the foundation of the “Lighthouse Catalytic Membrane Reactors” (LCMR) based on a detailed business plan and including partner commitment. This spin-off company will provide access to the combined knowledge of the MACBETH project with respect to all relevant disciplines such as building blocks, modelling and system integration, valorizing the project’s results through the structured offering of commercial services to interested stakeholders.

EU PROJECT MACBETH | Coordinator and partners

Evonik Performance Materials GmbH (coordinator)

Evonik Performance Materials GmbH is a leading provider of polymer materials and intermediates and belongs 100% to Evonik Industries AG, one of the world´s leading specialty chemicals companies with a workforce of about 33.500 and activities in more than 100 countries all over the world the sales in 2017 were € 14.4 billion.

Technical University of Denmark

The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is the leading technical university in Scandinavia and is highly ranked among the technical universities in the EU. It has more than 10.000 students and more than 3000 scientists employed.

LiqTech International

LiqTech International is a technology-based company that has its major activities in the development, production and marketing of Silicon Carbide (SiC) membranes and catalytic coating for water, wastewater and flue gas treatment.

Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

The Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) is among the Top 5 universities in Germany for Chemistry; Chemical Engineering in the Faculty of Engineering ranks number one in Germany with respect to its scientific output.

Evonik Technology & Infrastructure GmbH

Evonik Technology & Infrastructure GmbH belongs 100% to Evonik Industries AG, one of the world´s leading specialty chemicals companies and is an internal service unit of EVO.

Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht Zentrum für Material- und Küstenforschung GmbH

The Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht Zentrum für Material- und Küstenforschung GmbH (HZG) is one of 19 members of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres, Germany’s largest science organisation.

Eindhoven University of Technology

Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) is a research university specializing in engineering science & technology.

Fundación TECNALIA Research and Innovation

Fundación TECNALIA Research and Innovation is the largest private non-profit applied research center in Spain and the fifth in Europe, employing 1,378 people (164 PhDs) and with income of 102 Million € in 2013.


ICI CALDAIE S.p.A. was founded in 1958 and evolved into a specialist in the design and production of complete high-tech thermal systems. In 2005 ICI Caldaie S.p.A. established ICI_LAB, a proper self-standing department for innovative high-tech research and development.

Politecnico di Milano

Politecnico di Milano is a public technical university established in 1863, nowadays organised in 12 departments and a network of 6 Schools of Engineering, Architecture and Industrial Design.

Rauschert Kloster Veilsdorf GmbH

Rauschert is an independent company with more than 120 years of experience in the manufacture of both technical ceramic and plastic components for industrial customers.

Spanish National Research Council

The Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) is the largest public institution dedicated to research in Spain and the third largest in Europe. It has 70 research institutes and 53 joint research units with universities or other research institutions.


ENGIE is a major energy utility company (approximately 150 000 employees worldwide) providing highly efficient and innovative energy and services solutions to residential, commercial and industrial customers.

KT – Kinetics Technology S.p.A

KT – Kinetics Technology is an international Process Engineering Contractor with high expertise in hydrocarbon processing industry.

Università degli Studi di Salerno

The University of Salerno based its activity on research and educational programmes, developing links with the surrounding area while respecting the environment, with the aim of creating, enriching and, at the same time, offering a scientific, cultural heritage to students, enterprises, institutions and in general to the whole community.

Ciaotech s.r.l. a socio unico (PNO Innovation BV)

PNO Consultants is Europe’s largest independent innovation and public funding consultancy with around 300 employees and 30 offices in 7 countries, i.e. the Netherlands (HQ), Italy (Ciaotech), Germany (PNO DE), Belgium, France, the United Kingdom, Spain, and as well as a unit in Brussels.

Within MACBETH, PNO will be responsible for managing the dissemination and exploitation activities of the consortium.


Enzymicals AG, founded in 2009, is an interdisciplinary team of 17 scientists and technicians currently engaged to provide integrated solutions for industrial biocatalysis.

ChiralVision BV

ChiralVision is an SME focussing on the application of biocatalsyis. The company develops chemo-enzymatic processes for various markets including environmental, cosmetic, fine chemical and pharmaceutical industry.


The Flemish institute for technological research (Dutch: Vlaamse Instelling voor Technologisch Onderzoek or VITO), is a research organisation providing scientific advice and technological innovations for a sustainable society, comprising the areas of energy, chemistry, materials, health and land use.

Johnson Matthey PLC

Johnson Matthey is a UK based speciality chemicals company focused on its core skills in catalysis, precious metals, fine chemicals and process technology. The company employs around 13,000 people worldwide located in over 30 countries.


SOLUTEX is a technology-based company that uses sustainable technologies to extract, concentrate, purify and fractionate natural products of the highest quality, purity and potency, to be readily applied in the pharmaceutical, nutritional, and cosmetic markets.


The company was founded as a spin-off of the Technical University Graz in 2003. Today 25 employees work at the site in Allerheiligen bei Wildon. Customers are companies from pharmaceutical and chemical industries including 6 of the Pharma Top10, the biggest chemical company and the biggest lab chemical company.

Turkiye Petrol Rafinerileri Anonim Sirketi

Tüpraş is Turkey’s largest industrial enterprise, with 28.1 million tonnes crude oil processing capacity. Tüpraş has four refineries operating in four different cities with more than 5000 employees.

Would you like to find out more about the MACBETH project? Are you interested in EU funding? Would you like to join an EU project or initiate your own project? Get in touch with our EU funding and innovation experts

Macbeth has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program under Grant Agreement No 869896.

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