June 23, 2011

Genencor Launches New Enzyme Product For Cellulosic Ethanol Production

Genencor today announced a product advancement, Accellerase® TRIO. This new product will enable biofuel producers to more cost-effectively manufacture cellulosic ethanol from a wide range of renewable nonfood feedstocks such as switchgrass, wheat straw and corn stover as well as from municipal solid waste.

“Second-generation biofuels offer important energy security, as well as economic and environmental benefits to countries such as the United States, China, India and European nations that import a majority of their oil,” said Genencor CEO Tjerk de Ruiter. “Accellerase TRIO can accelerate the commercial production of cellulosic biofuels in markets across the world, helping many countries and companies find a more sustainable alternative to petroleum.”

Accellerase TRIO allows for a low enzyme dosage to produce ethanol, helping to improve the economics of cellulosic biofuel production. Genencor has improved the effectiveness of converting biomass into sugars, a critical step in the production of cellulosic ethanol. With Accellerase TRIO, Genencor provides a combined “cocktail” of enzymes all in one product to breakdown the glucan (C6) and xylan (C5) in the biomass feedstock into fermentable sugars, thus increasing the ethanol yield per unit of feedstock. 

Ethanol producers will discover other benefits. Accellerase TRIO works with a wide variety of renewable feedstocks, allowing producers to select nonfood crops and municipal solid waste that are abundant in their region to convert to ethanol or biochemicals. In addition, Accellerase TRIO can help boost total production by lowering viscosity and enabling producers to process more biomass. 

While still in the early stages of development, cellulosic ethanol is expected to play a crucial role in providing transportation fuel in many parts of the world. In the U.S., Congress has set a goal of 36 billion gallons of renewable fuel to be produced by 2022, with much of that amount coming from second-generation ethanol.

Genencor has a 25-year history in biofuels research and development. In 2007, Genencor was the first company to launch a commercial-scale enzyme for cellulosic ethanol production, Accellerase 1000, and later the company introduced Accellerase 1500 and Accellerase DUET.

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