Green Biologics Limited , a UK-based industrial biotechnology company with pilot scale facilities and offices in Columbus, Ohio, has announced a collaboration and planned investment in facilities with Easy Energy Systems Inc. The collaboration will result in the
modification of Easy Energy’s ethanol demonstration plant in Emmetsburg, Iowa 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 UK laboratories and at our Columbus, Ohio pilot facility,” said Sean Sutcliffe, CEO of Green Biologics “From these demonstration runs we have validated fermentation performance at scale meeting our commercial targets.”
Mark Gaalswyk, founder and chairman of Easy Energy added, “We’re delighted with our collaboration with Green Biologics and the work we have done to date with them. We look forward to building on this excellent working relationship with this commitment
they’ve made to Emmetsburg, allowing us to create together a first-rate renewable butanol demonstration facility.”
The scale-up work being undertaken in the U.S. complements commercial scale demonstration work already achieved in China. In 2011, Green Biologics partnered with Laihe Rockley Biochemical Ltd. in Songyuan, China and in 2012 produced the world’s
first commercial scale cellulosic n-butanol from residual corn waste (corn shells, corn cobs and stover). The Chinese commercial trial run was completed in June 2012 at 3.2 million liter fermentation scale in one of three 50,000 tonne/year production units. In Nov
2012, Green Biologics imported 55 tons of cellulosic n-butanol to the U.S. and is now marketing the material for chemical applications.