Green Biologics inks Iowa demo plant deal with Easy Energy Systems

July 2, 2013 |

Fermentors Emmetsburg 2

Green Biologics heads for scale – pilot complete, demo ready in 2014. The race for n-butanol from cellulosic materials is on.

The prize for a transformative breakthrough on n-butanol’s cost, performance and sustainability? Could be millions. Could be billions.

In the UK, Green Biologics announced a collaboration and planned investment in facilities with Iowa’s Easy Energy Systems. The collaboration will result in the modification of Easy Energy’s ethanol demonstration plant in Emmetsburg, IA to produce renewable n-butanol and acetone. In mid-2012 GBL successfully produced butanol and acetone from corn mash at the Emmetsburg facility in Iowa at a 40,000 liter fermentation scale.

“We ran three separate batches in July 2012 which matched results in both total solvent production and n-butanol yields that were achieved in our U.K. laboratories and at our Columbus, Ohio pilot facility,” says Sean Sutcliffe, CEO of Green Biologics. “From these demonstration runs we have validated fermentation performance at scale meeting our commercial targets.”

Distillation unit at Emmetsburg

Distillation unit at Emmetsburg

In May 2013, Green Biologics successfully demonstrated its advanced fermentation process at pilot scale in Gahanna, Ohio. “This technology capitalizes on the unique characteristics of Green Biologics’s advanced biocatalysts and provides a doubling of butanol production productivity compared to existing processes with a modest incremental capital investment,” said Patrick Simms, Chief Operating Officer for GBL’s North American business. “We are now scaling to 80,000 liters in Iowa.”

In today’s Digest, we go back to butanol school for a primer on isobutanol and n-butanol, look at cellulosic biobutanol, the Iowa project, scale-up in China to date, and plans for a first commercial project in the US – plus the bottom line, by following the page links below.

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