U.S. DOE awards SarTec US$500,000 grant to develop, enhance use of inedible energy crops including Pennycress, Camelina for biodiesel production; local farmers in Central Plains region will be contracted to grow crops
October 6, 2011
– SarTec Corporation announced today it has received a $500,000 Department of Energy grant (Award # DE-EE0003127) as part of a larger project to develop and enhance the use of inedible energy crops for the production of advanced biofuels using the patented Mcgyan® biodiesel process.
The project will involve local farmers in the central plains region of the United States who will be contracted to grow low-impact, non-food based Pennycress and Camelina crops for oil production. The resultant oil from these non-food crops will be collected and transported to the 3 million gallon per year Ever Cat Fuels commercial biodiesel production facility (Isanti, MN) that employs the Mcgyan® biodiesel process. At this facility the Pennycress and Camelina oils will be converted into biodiesel which meets all ASTM D6751 grade specifications.
Farmers will be selected and educated on how to plant, grow and harvest these low-impact Pennycress and Camelina crops and will be compensated for the crop they produce as well as be educated on the USDA Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) which will allow them to be further compensated.
The benefits and outcomes of this project include: the production of biodiesel from non-food energy crops such as Pennycress and Camelina at commercial scale, an improvement in rural economies and, most importantly, a demonstration that farmers are able to produce these low-impact non-food energy crops in addition to their normal production of food crops.
In 2006, SarTec Corporation developed a one-step oil to biofuel production process, termed the Mcgyan® biodiesel process. The process simultaneously performs a catalytic conversion of triglycerides and free fatty acids into biodiesel fuel. The Mcgyan® process offers several advantages over the traditional base catalyzed process including the ability to covert Free Fatty Acid (FFA) containing non-food feedstocks into biodiesel. In addition, the process consumes no water or harsh chemicals, occupies a small footprint, and produces no hazardous waste products. The scalability of the Mcgyan® process makes it a practical choice for a variety of applications from decentralized small farm systems to full scale commercial plants.