Skip to content
Available Technology

Biotechnology, Sustainable Energy, Sustainable Environment

Polyamine-cellulose nanocrystals for the removal of dissolved metals in rendered fats

Inventors: Dr. Daniel Whitehead, Dr. Carlos D. Garcia, Dr. Ezequiel Vidal

Market Overview

The animal food industry produces enormous amounts of byproducts every year, including hooves, bones, blood, organs, and fat. These aggregated byproducts are collected and processed in rendering plants into various subproducts that reenter the industrial cycle. The rendered fats, composed of triglycerides from the adipose tissue of animals, are typically sold as lard, soaps, and additives for pet food formulations. However, the metal and inorganic contaminants in the rendered fat limit the marketability of the material towards biofuels, as the high metal concentrations poison refining catalysts. The development of this novel process allows for the removal of such metal and inorganic contaminants from the rendered fat. Currently, there are no other feasible strategies on the market to solve this problem. High value applications include biodiesel refining and animal feed applications. In particular, when considering the current context of energy scarcity, an effective, economic, and simple method for the removal of the undesirable elements could significantly contribute to the development of the emerging biodiesel and renewable diesel industries.


Biodiesel, Renewable Diesel, Pet/animal feed

Technical Summary:

Through the novel process, modified cellulose nanocrystals, a low-cost material can be applied along with water to significantly reduce the metal and inorganic burden in rendered fat samples. With the treatment strategy, concentrations of metals can be reduced by about 90% or more. After the combined extraction, the rendered fat can meet quality standards for their application in biodiesel or animal feed production.


  • Allows access to high value applications for rendered fats.
  • There is no other viable solution to this problem on the current market.
  • Reduces concentrations of metal and inorganic components by about 90% or more.
  • Methods utilize low-cost materials.
  • The use of feedstocks for the generation of biodiesel is a rapidly growing market.

Download Printable PDF

Technology Overview

State of Development

Available for Licensing

Patent Type



Biotechnology, Sustainable Energy, Sustainable Environment

CURF Reference No.



Dr. Daniel Whitehead, Dr. Carlos D. Garcia, Dr. Ezequiel Vidal

For More Info, Contact:

A. Chris Gesswein
Director of Licensing for Technology Transfer

E: agesswe@clemson.edu
P: (864) 656-0797


Get Started
Ready to Get Started?

Contact our team at CURF

Contact CURF