In Florida, Alliance BioEnergy Plus, Inc. announced that its’ subsidiary Ek Laboratories in Longwood, Florida, under the direction of Dr. Richard Blair, Dr. Peter Cohen and Dr. Zhilin Xie, achieved 63% conversion of Coastal Hay, at commercial scale, into fermentable sugars in less than 30 minutes, using its licensed and patented mechanical/chemical CTS (Cellulose to Sugar) process.
Unlike all other cellulose to sugar technologies the CTS process does not use liquid acids, applied heat or pressure, enzymes, super critical waters, expensive precious metal lined equipment or any hazardous materials. The CTS process can convert virtually any cellulose material, unlike all of the other conversion processes, and uses a simple, inexpensive mechanical process that converts the cellulose into fermentable sugars and other valuable products in a single step in just minutes, not hours or days like the other conversion technologies. For the first time highly coveted cellulose sugars will be available for ethanol, diesels and other biofuels manufacturers and blenders at a commercial scale and at a cost that makes them profitable for the first time without government subsidy.
“We have completely redesigned and custom manufactured the mill and went from 1g in the lab to a mill capable of processing 2,500kg (2.5mt) a day, in a single leap, while seeing the efficiency and conversion rates increase and energy consumption decrease,” said Dr Peter Cohen, Director of Analytics at Ek Labs. He went on to say, “Unlike traditional chemical processes or industrial scaling, this is a mechanical process where the chemistry happens thousands of times at a micro scale by a kinetic process therefore aided by size and increased impact pressure. We will have multiple mills of varying sizes running at any given time. Scaling becomes a nonissue. We should see 70% to 80% conversion rates by the time we are finished with the first commercial plant for sub-licensee RRDA in early 2016.” The RRDA plant currently being designed and located in southeast Georgia will process 1,000mt a day of yellow pine and Vidalia onion waste.
At the current 63% conversion rate a CTS plant, whether licensed or company owned, processing 1,000mt a day of virtually any biomass should collect in excess of $84 million of revenue from the sale of cellulose sugars at the lowest market rate. That translates into more than $35 million in net profit per year, per plant. This doesn’t include the sale or further processing of the pure lignin, which is the only byproduct of the CTS process and has a value more than the sugars.
The CTS process is unlike all other cellulose conversion technologies in its conversion times (minutes compared to hours or days); its hazardous inputs (no liquid acids, enzymes, super critical pressures or heat); by products (no hazardous effluent’s byproducts, chemicals, waste); its capital costs (less than $30 million compared to more than $200 million); and cost of goods (pennies a pound compared to quarters and dollars). Existing plants can be easily converted to the CTS process and eliminate several steps in the production of ethanol’s, diesels, alcohols and other fermentable products at a fraction of the cost of any competing technology.