Altranex: Biofuels Digest’s 2015 5-Minute Guide

5-Minute-Guide-logoAltranex process technology biofuels have key features that enable them to meet the growing demand for renewable fuel:

As drop-in replacements for existing petroleum-based fuels, Altranex fuels work with existing fueling infrastructure and don’t require any change to engines. Altranex fuels use a variety of waste and virgin biological feedstock. The use of low-cost feedstock and modified existing refineries will make Altranex fuels competitive with oil.

The Situation

Not only can Altranex deliver a kerosene additive for the booming biodiesel market – and potentially opening up a much broader adoption among truckers in, for example, Canada and Northern Europe, the company has opportunities for developing drop-in jet fuels through its low-cost kerosene technology.

As opposed to Fischer-Tropsch technologies that use a significant amount of hydrogen to power their reactions and push the production costs, and capital costs, skywards, Altranex uses electrochemical processes to breakdown plant oils down and then deoxygenate them – so, if you will, subtracting oxygen without requiring hydrogen to get the job done.

Products

Altra-K fuel is a renewable diesel-type fuel specifically formulated for use in cold climates. Unlike biodiesel, it remains liquid at temperatures as low as -30 C (-22 F).

Altra-DZL is Altranex’s renewable diesel fuel with the widest range of use. It can be used in unmodified diesel-engine vehicles where cold temperatures are not an issue. Altranex’s proprietary GreenKero process turns the same biological feedstock used in biodiesel into a hydrocarbon fuel, very similar to petroleum diesel in its chemical composition.

Altra-JT. Altranex’s GreenKero process can produce hydrocarbon fuels compatible with aviation needs.

Altra-HF. Altranex’s GreenKero technology produces a drop-in replacement for heavy fuel oil (HFO) that, today, meets the 2020 emissions requirements and does not require any modifications to the ship’s power system. HFO or bunker oil is known as a dirty and high-polluting fuel. As a result, the use of HFO has decreased for power generation, locomotives, and industrial heating. But it is still used in shipping where, traditionally, there has been little regulation of emissions in international waters.

Stage of evolution and recognition:

Altranex is still in the prototype stage, but managed to reach the semi-finals in the CleanTech Open and the MassChallenge last year.

Major Investors: Privately held

Top Past Milestones

In March 2015, Altranex was issued a patent for its novel process which transforms bio-based oils and fats into high performance lubricants. In independent evaluations by international motor oil producers, their product Altra-BASE exhibits performance characteristics of synthetic motor oils, but can be produced from multiple low-cost renewable sources much cheaper than synthetic fuels.

In July 2014, Altranex was selected as one of the Finalist in the 2014 Defense Energy Technology Challenge (DETC) program as part of the Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit, to be held at the Hawai’i Convention Center in Honolulu, Hawai’i, September 15-17, 2014.

In July 2014, Altranex entered into a Contribution Agreement with the National Research Council of Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP). The agreement shares the cost for Altranex to scale-up the production of Altranex’s Altra-HF shipping fuel and other products. The NRC-IRAP financial support is up to $200,000.

In April 2013, Altranex Corp established a research & development operation with a partnership with GreenCentre Canada.  This partnership gives Altranex access to state-of-the-art chemistry laboratories in Kingston, Ontario where the company will be developing and demonstrating its fuel production technology.

Business Model: Technology licensor

Competitive Edge:  Altranex produces a drop-in replacement diesel fuel from renewable resources with superior cold weather properties enabling broader adoption of renewable diesel fuels in North America and Europe.

Research, or Manufacturing Partnerships or Alliances.

Research partner: GreenCentre Canada

Stage  (Bench, pilot, demonstration, commercial)

Bench-scale development & demonstration

Company website

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