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Comment PDF Environment, Health, Safety & Security

Chementator: Cellulosic ethanol  

By Gerald Ondrey |

Dupont (Wilmington, Del.; edlinks.chemengonline.com/7373-533) and its partner Genencor (Palo Alto, Calif.; edlinks.chemengonline.com/7373-534), a div. of Danisco A/S, plan to invest $140 million to integrate the pretreatment process and fermenting organism — developed with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL: Golden, Colo.) — and enzyme technologies — developed by Genencor — in a joint venture (JV) to convert corn stover and sugar-cane-based bagasse into ethanol. Dupont and Genencor expect to have a pilot plant demonstrating the technology in operation by 2009, and a commercial-scale facility operational in the next three years. The pretreatment process makes the carbohydrate portion of corn stover more amenable to enzymatic digestion to make all biomass sugars available for fermentation. The proprietary organism, based on NREL discoveries and improvements to the biocatalyst Zymonas mobilis, can ferment sugars to a high ethanol concentration. The key to the JV is said be a less-expensive enzyme that Genencor and NREL developed for breaking down cellulose.   Click here for a full pdf version of the Chementator Section  
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