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Biosciences Center

Located in San Diego, bp’s Biosciences Center (BSC) is a key component of our global innovative and engineering business

Cross-disciplinary excellence

The BSC conducts ground-breaking research and supports low carbon technology development and deployment as well as strategic investments and partnerships, all of which accelerate bp’s ambition to become a net zero company.


The team includes dozens of scientists and engineers with cross-disciplinary capabilities in biosciences, chemical engineering, industrial microbiology and computational sciences. At the BSC, we believe we’ve created a differentiated biotechnology capability, which includes some 80,000 tubes, vials and plates of biodiversity archives.

Accelerating low carbon technology 

BSC experts provide technology advisory services to a wide range of bp businesses. For example, they help our trading and shipping business with renewable natural gas and low carbon fuels project development, and they help bp ventures evaluate disruptive low carbon technologies and understand different investment possibilities.


In recent years, the BSC team has supported our investment in California-based Fulcrum BioEnergy, which in 2021 finished building the first-ever commercial-scale plant capable of turning household garbage into low-cost, zero-carbon transportation fuels. Meanwhile, the BSC continues to provide engineering support to our Brazilian bioenergy joint venture bp Bunge biofuels business.


Other BSC research has examined opportunities for metal recovery from bp’s liquid wastewater streams and whether environmental DNA could help improve impact assessments and monitoring across our businesses.

Employee in safety gear looking at equipment

Advanced materials for a net zero world

Beyond lab and business work, the BSC supports world-class independent research programs, including the bp International Centre for Advanced Materials – partnership with leading universities for effective application of advanced materials for the transition to net zero. 


Teams work seamlessly to address a range of global energy industry challenges from hydrogen generation, thermal management and degradation of batteries, to improving asset operations and supporting the development of advanced fuels and lubricants. 

Partnership with the University of Illinois

Since it was set-up in 2012, bp-ICAM has funded research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) to help develop new materials that improve the safe operation and reliability of components and systems where routine inspection is difficult.

In 2020, test panels of a self-healing coating developed at UIUC to address corrosion were prepared for long-term trials on bp assets. UIUC has also led efforts to develop lubricant-impregnated surfaces that enhance condensation and improve heat transfer coefficients for low surface tension fluids, such as alcohols or alkenes, which significantly improve operational efficiencies.


The BSC will remain a key driver of innovation for bp, supporting our businesses and helping us to deliver our net zero strategy.