Genencor eyes textile processing market

Genencor eyes textile processing market

F O C U S kind of fuel for cars and aircraft, one that can be produced in its existing refineries and will not require modification of vehicles’ engin...

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F O C U S kind of fuel for cars and aircraft, one that can be produced in its existing refineries and will not require modification of vehicles’ engines. At the heart of the project is Craig Venter, the scientist best known for his private-sector effort to sequence the human genome, and his latest company, Synthetic Genomics. Exxon is putting $300 M into its own research and at least as much again into Synthetic Genomic’s efforts to build a lab and, ultimately, large-scale production facilities. Both sides were enthusiastic but cautious in announcing the partnership on 14 Jul 2009. Spending on the algae fuels project will require only a fraction of Exxon’s annual capital budgets of $25 bn to $30 bn, but it will be the world’s largest biofuels development project of its kind, Mr Venter said. The Independent, 15 Jul 2009 (Website: & Business Week, 27 Jul 2009, (4140), 8 & Chimie Pharma Hebdo, 21 Jul 2009, (474), 6 (in French) & ICIS Chemical Business, 20 Jul 2009 (Website: & Chemical and Engineering News, 20 Jul 2009, 15

Independent lab results confirm GAEC ethanol process Gulf Alternative Energy Corp (GAEC) announced the lab test results on its biomass pre-processing technology. This unique process converts cellulosic biomass into a fine, dry powder for processing into ethanol. Testing was conducted by the highly respected Microbac Laboratories Inc (Microbac) in Boulder, CO. Lab results showed that all sugars were produced from GAEC Sorghum in 16 hours compared to 64 hours for unprocessed control samples. This is a 400% increase in processing speed under controlled lab conditions. Microbac concluded that GAEC’s industrial grade processing was as efficient as the best lab scale processing used to test biomass. The report concludes that the GAEC process significantly impacted processing time for cellulosic ethanol. It is focused on commercialising its cellulose pre-processing technology and on expanding its green technology portfolio. Transforming cellulose to ethanol efficiently is a technical challenge that will transform the biofuels industry. GAEC believes it has moved the industry much closer




to economic viability with its preprocessing technology that turns nonfood plant material (called biomass) into extremely small particles that can more quickly and more cheaply be turned into ethanol. Gulf Alternative Energy Corp is an alternative energy company focused on the development of the alternative energy industry with a particular emphasis on Texas and the Gulf Coast. Press release from: Gulf Alternative Energy Corp, 1240 Blalock Road, Ste 200, Houston, Texas 77055, USA. Tel: +1 713 461 9229. Fax: +1 713 461 9230. Website: (13 Jul 2009)

Genencor eyes textile processing market Genencor, an enzyme producer based in The Netherlands, plans to venture into the $18 bn (€12.7 bn) textile and garment processing sector. The textile chemicals market represents a potentially lucrative market for the company as enzymes currently account for only about 1% of textile processing. ICIS Chemical Business, 27 Jul 2009 (Website:

Idemitsu putting pieces in place for better RFCC process Idemitsu Kosan plans to commence the use of its enhanced residue-fluidcatalytic cracking (RFCC) system at its Aichi refinery in 2009. The company created a novel catalyst to crack heavy fuel oil in the RFCC system’s first stage. Idemitsu had shown on a laboratory-scale setting that the new catalyst bolstered cracking by over 10% without affecting desulfurization, hiking naphtha, kerosene, and light oil output. The new catalyst also enhanced the catalyst for the RFCC’s second stage, lowering heavy-oil output by 2% to bolster final gasoline yield. The firm plans to employ 100200 tonnes of the prototype catalyst into the RFCC unit at Aichi in 2009. Meanwhile, the firm also created a new conversion process for C4 olefins into petrochemicals starting materials such as ethylene, propylene, and aromatics, with yield of up to 90% or higher. Japan Chemical Web, 14 Jul 2009 (Website:

Lignol announces memorandum of understanding with BAE Systems Lignol Energy Corp (Lignol) a leading technology company in the cellulosic ethanol and biorefining sector, and BAE Systems PLC announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding to explore and develop commercial applications for bio – chemicals from the Lignol biorefinery process that have use or synergies within BAE Systems’ business, as well as finance cellulosic ethanol projects. Over the next few months Lignol will be exploring a wide range of potential applications for its high purity lignins and other biochemicals which have synergies within BAE Systems’ business. The objective of both parties is to formalize a joint development agreement and subsequent work plan to incorporate Lignol’s biochemicals within BAE Systems’ business. In addition to the focused collaboration on biochemical applications, Lignol will also work with BAE Systems and other third parties in evaluating the development and financing of commercial scale biorefineries utilising Lignol’s unique process technology. BAE Systems will be working with Lignol, within an appropriate framework. Also, BAE Systems will work with Lignol to identify specific biorefinery projects in Canada and around the world. BAE Systems is the premier global defence, security and aerospace company delivering a full range of products and services for air, land, and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, security, information technology solutions, and customer support services. With approximately 105,000 employees worldwide, BAE Systems’ sales exceeded $34.4 bn in 2008. Lignol is a Canadian company undertaking the development of biorefining technologies for the production of fuel – grade ethanol and other biochemical co-products from non-food cellulosic biomass feedstocks. Lignol’s modified solvent based pre-treatment technology facilitates the rapid, highyield conversion of cellulose to ethanol and the production of valueadded biochemical co-products, including high purity HP-L lignins. Press release from: Lignol Energy Corporation, Unit 101, 4705 Wayburne Drive, Burnaby, BC V5G 3L1, Canada. Tel: +1 604 222 9800. Fax: +1 604 222 9801. E-mail: [email protected] Website: (22 Jul 2009)