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Old 11-15-2008, 01:51 PM   #1
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Default California pilot plant opened to produce renewable diesel

Emeryville, California - California-based Amryis Biotechnologies has announced that it has opened its first pilot plant to produce its “No Compromise” renewable diesel fuel. The plant, which was completed in September, marks a milestone in Amyris’ goal to develop and commercialize its sustainable, hydrocarbon-based fuel, which it expects to bring to market in 2010.

The plant serves as a technical gateway to commercialization in Brazil and other manufacturing locations, and will demonstrate Amyris’ technology in scaled-down process equipment that is representative of full commercial scale operations. The “No Compromise” diesel is designed to be a scalable, low-cost renewable fuel with performance attributes that equal or exceed those of petroleum-sourced fuels and currently available biofuels.

Preliminary analyses show that it has virtually no sulfur, significantly reduced NOx, particulate, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon exhaust emissions relative to petroleum-sourced diesel, it can be blended with petroleum diesel at rates up to 50 per cent, compared with 10 to 20 per cent for conventional biodiesel and ethanol, and it can be produced from a broad range of feedstock, including sugar cane and cellulosic biomass. The company said it will start with Brazilian sugar cane because it provides the most environmentally sound, economical and scalable source of energy currently available.

“This new diesel fuel has all the characteristics to make an important contribution toward solving our global transportation energy and climate crisis,” said John Melo, CEO of Amyris. “The opening of our pilot plant is a significant business marker for us, taking us one step closer to bringing our diesel fuel to market.”

In parallel with the California plant, Amyris will open a larger pilot plant in Campinas, Brazil in the spring of 2009, where it will finalize processes for Brazilian operations and transfer the technology to manufacturing sites in Brazil.
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Old 11-15-2008, 04:14 PM   #2
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I wish all of these renewable fuel sources well. Electric cars have many limitations (range, time to recharge, mass of batteries to tow) and I feel a stable, simple fuel source is what's needed to replace petroleum.

Also, I want my kids and grand kids to feel the rush of a revving internal combustion engine without going to a museum.
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Old 11-15-2008, 08:01 PM   #3
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I don't get it. It can use any kind of biomass?
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Old 11-15-2008, 09:12 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by matt30 View Post
I don't get it. It can use any kind of biomass?
Sounds like. They dropped a few important lines from the original press release:

Amyris engineers new metabolic pathways in industrial microbes (bacteria or yeast) to produce a large range of molecules (isoprenoids) used in energy, pharmaceutical, and chemical applications via fermentation of sugar from plant-based feedstocks. The end product can be a “drop-in” hydrocarbon fuel. The renewable diesel project uses a modified yeast.
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Old 11-15-2008, 10:47 PM   #5
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Green diesel looks promising also. Burning algae that has the same properties as regular diesel. Just dump it right in green.
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Old 11-17-2008, 03:04 PM   #6
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Now we just need some auto makers to step up to the plate with some nice diesel vehicles for us regular peeps to use. I've been waiting too damn long for good cars that get great milege.
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