About the Renewable Bioproducts Institute

RBI History Graphic










Georgia Tech’s Renewable Bioproducts Institute (RBI) is one of ten campus interdisciplinary research institutes. RBI champions innovation in converting biomass into value-added products, developing advanced chemical and bio-based refining technologies, and advancing excellence in manufacturing processes. Our three strategic thrusts are circular materials, bioindustrial manufacturing, and paper, packaging and tissue.

We serve as a campus conduit for industry-university partnerships and provide a portal to Georgia Tech core laboratories, faculty and students whose work and expertise is focused on biomass and bioproducts.

The Renewable Bioproducts Institute evolved from the Institute of Paper Chemistry formed in 1929 in Appleton, Wisc. RBI continues the history of forest products research excellence and features a unique multi-million dollar endowment that supports both students and faculty pursuing innovative renewable bioproducts research.


The mission of the Renewable Bioproducts Institute is to advance both science and engineering for the biorefining of forest and agricultural biomass by creating new bioproducts and biochemicals while enhancing the value of existing renewable products and significantly reducing the cost and resource requirements of those products and processes.


We will be the premier institute for advanced and translational research in the area of renewables by creating an interdisciplinary engine for value added bioproducts, biochemical and bioprocesses in the market.


The Renewable Bioproducts Institute will leverage the full capabilities of Georgia Tech in the service of companies looking for opportunities in the areas of renewable chemicals, new bio-based feedstocks, renewable and biodegradable plastics, advanced biofuels and bio-based materials and composites.


At RBI, bioprocessing can be defined as the chemical, biological or mechanical processing of forest biomass into value-added products.  It includes the development of sustainable manufacturing processes to produce new value-added products from forest biomass.  Our researchers are particularly interested in addressing the fundamental and manufacturing challenges for future high margin/high volume products from forest biomaterials.

Scientist-tree crop


Bioproducts research at RBI builds on decades of experience collaborating with pulp and paper manufacturers – extending today into a broad array of industries interested in creating value from forest and agricultural materials. The spectrum of bioproducts research at RBI spans operational excellence of existing pulp and paper manufacturing assets to creating new products. RBI is helping companies become more efficient and cost-effective in their operations – and develop value-added products for the future.

Scientist-in the field


RBI Brochure


The Renewable Bioproducts Institute (RBI), formerly the Institute of Paper Science and Technology (IPST), was founded in 1929 as the Institute of Paper Chemistry in the state of Wisconsin. The institute was created to provide science, technology and education in support of the pulp and paper industry, a rapidly growing sector of the economy whose executives recognized the need for employees specifically trained in the scientific processes of papermaking.

It was out of that need that an undergraduate program was initially developed to provide technical training to local mill personnel. The curriculum applied a liberal arts philosophy to the teaching of science and technology. Faculty would encourage imagination and creative thinking, grounded in thorough knowledge of fundamental research procedures. This educational philosophy continues today.

Robert C. Williams Museum of Papermaking

The Renewable Bioproducts Institute is also home to the Robert C. Williams Museum of Papermaking. This internationally renowned institution is an unparalleled resource on the history of paper and paper technology. In addition to more than 2,000 books, the museum features a remarkable collection of more than 10,000 watermarks, papers, tools, machines and manuscripts.



Carson Meredith, Ph.D.

Carson Meredith, Ph.D.,
Executive Director, Renewable Bioproducts Institute (404) 894-2082  Email  

Welcome to RBI


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