Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Royal Nedalco will open a cellullosic ethanol plant using yeast, not bacteria

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Ger Bemer, Chief Executive Officer at Royal Nedalco, is sure that the first cellullosic ethanol we will have at the pump will come from a yeast process, not bacteria. According to him, bacteria are too sensitive to infections and this makes the R&D process slow, because companies have to take smaller steps until they can find a stable method for obtaining ethanol from switchgrass. Mr. Berner says that yeasts, on the other hand, are more resistant, have been used by the industry for more years, and can offer results immediately.

He's so sure of his claim that Royal Nedalco is not bothering with an experimental plant: it's going to start production immediately at a new cellullosic ethanol production facility in Sas van Gent (the Netherlands), with an annual production capacity of approximately 200 million liters. Mr. Berner justifies the decision by saying the market potential is there now.

[Source: Ethanol Statistics]


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