Joule announces new investment, results of fuel testing

By Erin Voegele | May 14, 2015

Joule Unlimited Inc. has announced third-party testing of its fuel ethanol has confirmed its ethanol meets U.S. and European standards. The company has also secured $40 million in private equity and venture debt financing.

The fuel ethanol testing, which sets the stage for Joule to obtain certification for commercial use, was initiated by Audi, the company’s strategic partner in the automotive space. According to Joule, the results show its ethanol meets the ASTM-D4806 standard for denatured fuel ethanol for blending with gasolines for use as automotive spark-ignition engine fuel. The fuel also meets DIN EN 15376 standard for ethanol as a blending component for petrol.

Joule has initiated efforts to use these results to obtain the government approvals needed for commercialization of its ethanol fuel.

“Audi and Joule share a commitment to making carbon-neutral mobility a reality,” said Reiner Mangold, head of sustainable product development, Audi AG. “The successful testing of ethanol produced from CO2 is another encouraging indication of this technology’s progress. We are proud to work with Joule to ultimately sustain global transportation without emitting more CO2 than is consumed.”

The $40 million funding round will support Joule’s growth towards commercialization. The round was led by existing investors, including Flagship Ventures, and brings the company’s total to $200 million raised to date.

The proceeds will be applied towards a staged industrialization of its patented, reverse-combustion process, including the near-term expansion of Joule’s production field in Hobbs, New Mexico. This will lead to the longer-term build-out of a 1,000-acre plant to begin in 2017. In an optimal location, a plant of this size has the potential to convert 150,000 metric tons of waste CO2 into 25 million gallons of ethanol or 15 million gallons of diesel per year.

“In the past six months alone, Joule has achieved rapid progress and impressive results that position the company well for industrialization. This progress will be bolstered by the newly committed funds and the continued support from our shareholders and strategic partners, including Audi,” said Serge Tchuruk, president and CEO of Joule. “Joule’s CO2-recycled fuel is on track to become a real answer for carbon neutrality. It provides a solution which is both practical and economical for global mobility and it can be implemented in the short term.”

 “The call for global decarbonization is increasingly making headlines, and Joule is at the forefront of a CO2 recycling movement that can both reduce industrial emissions and generate economic growth,” said Noubar Afeyan, co-founder and chairman of Joule and senior managing partner and CEO of Flagship Ventures. “The company has proven the industrial viability of its approach and, with the strong new leadership team in place, is rapidly advancing towards market introduction within the next few