Butamax, Highwater Ethanol break ground on biobutanol retrofit

By Butamax Advanced Biofuels LLC | October 02, 2013

Butamax Advanced Biofuels LLC, a biobutanol technology company, and Highwater Ethanol LLC, a producer of first-generation ethanol, have begun to retrofit Highwater's ethanol plant in Lamberton, Minn., for the production of biobutanol. Butamax's cutting edge technology package will include the installation of novel corn oil separation technology. Butamax and Highwater have entered into definitive agreements for license of Butamax's patented corn oil separation technology, which is an integral part of a full retrofit to biobutanol production and can also be installed independently as a first phase of the conversion. Installation of the patent protected Butamax separation system has already commenced with commercial production expected this winter.

"This is an important milestone for Butamax and its partners,” said Butamax CEO Paul Beckwith. “We formulated a strategy to provide the most advanced technology to improve current biofuel production, offer better co-product profiles, and pave the way for near-term, large-scale isobutanol production. Today, our vision is becoming reality."

"We investigated other options for corn oil recovery, but we had the advantage of seeing the Butamax system first-hand and we were impressed with what we saw,” said Highwater Ethanol CEO Brian Kletscher. “Not only was the production class leading, but the expertise Butamax assembled is unparalleled, including experts from BP, DuPont and Fagen. We are very excited to execute this stage and move to negotiations for biobutanol production."

"We have spent significant time and energy building the right team and developing and protecting the right technology. We could not be more excited about the next steps towards a whole new biofuels industry,” Beckwith added.

Additionally, Butamax has reached agreement with Fagen Inc. for the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) of this project and as part of Butamax's vision for roll-out of its full biobutanol production technology.