Danish biotech firm Inbicon to market its cellulosic ethanol technology to U.S. and Canadian biofuels companies
August 27, 2008
– Niels Henriksen, president and CEO of Inbicon, a biotech spin-off owned by Danish energy giant DONG Energy (dongenergy.com), today announced the next step in its marketing strategy of partnering with North American biofuels companies and licensing its second-generation cellulosic technology for commercial-scale production of ethanol and livestock feed.
"By partnering with Thomas Corle and his U.S.-based G-team," says Inbicon's Henriksen, "we're accelerating the introduction of our pre-treatment concepts to biorefinery developers outside Europe. Our systems have been handling and converting biomass for a decade, and we've operated a pilot plant successfully since 2003. By December 2009, at the Kalundborg port in Denmark, we'll showcase our large-scale (1.4 million US gallons per year) demonstration plant to world leaders at the COP15 UN climate summit being held in Copenhagen."
"Two significant advantages set Inbicon apart," states G-team founder Corle. "First, its unique, patented cellulosic technology works at low-operational costs compared to other biomass process technologies emerging today. That translates to a low-cost fuel ethanol produced from biowastes to market to consumers and meet government mandates for energy independence. Second, Inbicon has proven its technology works over a 5-year period."
Inbicon focuses on the front-end of a 2G biorefinery process, breaking down grain straw, corn stover, and other agricultural wastes into liquefied sugars ready for fermentation into alcohol. Its hydrothermal pre-treatment cuts the amount of expensive enzymes necessary, which cuts ethanol production costs significantly. Processing efficiency climbs further when Inbicon technology is integrated with electric power generation, "a symbiotic relationship," as Henriksen describes it, "we'll demonstrate with the Kalundborg project. Waste heat from the power plant will help process the straw, and a solid by-product from ethanol production will replace some of the coal burned by the power plant."
Inbicon's is a flexible design. Biorefineries can use its cellulosic technology for the plant's front end. Or, for an existing corn-fed plant, use Inbicon to add a 2G biomass feedstock stream like corn stover, grain straws, or other agricultural wastes to produce fuel ethanol.
Plans call for the G-team to seek North American partners with the cleanest, most efficient technologies compatible with Inbicon's integrated biomass conversion, as well as investors, developers, and government grants necessary to fund and launch 2G biorefinery projects.
Henriksen and Corle also seek collaborators to create sustainable, carbon-neutral energy parks providing renewable electricity, liquid biofuels, livestock feeds, and high-value foods at the lowest cost.
The G-team was launched by Corle after a decade marketing Delta-T, a U.S. ethanol technology firm that grew to a $500 million company and was recently sold. For its clients, G-team brings together experts in biofuels marketing and branding, as well as business planners and project developers.
North America isn't the only target for Inbicon marketing. Because the process is compatible with bagasse from sugar production, rice and barley straw, even household wastes, Central and South America are also potential markets for Inbicon's 2G technology.
As governments the world over clamor for energy independence without sacrificing cleaner air and lower greenhouse gas emissions, Corle says "Inbicon's technology will make a low-cost liquid biofuel not made from a food or feed crop a reality. We plan on an aggressive marketing campaign to make it a viable solution to world economies and environmental heartaches within the next few years."