As modern biotechnology concepts begin to mature, it is quite appropriate to consider the mechanisms of transferring these concepts to the market place. Obviously many factors enter into this "technology transfer," but one important ingredient is the necessary "bridging" research and development that allows appropriate basic biological research to be applied in an industrial or market setting. Of course, there must also be a knowledgeable and willing industrial participant or other agency who can provide the necessary capital and marketing expertise. Thus, there is a need for an enlightened exchange of information between the researcher, developer, and marketer. This Sixth Symposium on Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals, held in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, provides a forum for the exchange of such information and the participants represent all facets of the appropriate research, development, and marketing community. The emphasis of the research and developments reported here is on the conversion of renewable resources including waste materials to fuels and chemical feedstocks.
The special topic of the meeting was a consideration of advanced concepts for process monitoring and control. However, as in past meetings in this series, applied and basic research in thermal/chemical processing and bio-conversion of various types of biomass were also included.