FEW: Inbicon announces engineering model for North American market

By Erin Voegele | June 03, 2009
Report posted June 16, 2009, at 9:50 p.m. CST

Denmark-based biofuels company Inbicon A/S announced two new developments at the International Fuel Ethanol Workshop and Expo in Denver on June 16. According to Inbicon CEO Niels Henriksen, the company is nearing start-up of its demonstration scale plant at the port of Kalundborg, and has also recently introduced a new 20 MMgy engineering model that is designed to demonstrate the Inbicon Biomass Refinery in North America.

According to Tom Corle, co-founder of G-Team Consultants, working for Inbicon in North America, this 20MMgy engineering model has been designed to be integrated with existing 100 MMgy grain ethanol plants. Furthermore, the cellulosic ethanol produced at these Inbicon biomass refineries will be marketed and advertised under the "New Ethanol" banner. The goal is to create an international brand that distinguishes the Inbicon process from other cellulosic technologies, Corle said.

New Ethanol will offer buyers a number of advantages as a low carbon fuel. No fossil fuels will be used to produce it, there is tight control over greenhouse gas emissions, and the fuel generates a light environmental footprint. In addition, Corle said, New Ethanol is manufactured from agricultural waste and is a homegrown fuel that displaces petroleum.

According to Jeff Robert, also with G-Team Consultants, there are many advantages to a business model that co-locates cellulosic facilities with exiting corn ethanol plants. He said 100 MMgy corn ethanol plants are already strategically located in areas with ample feedstock supplies. In addition, these plants are also located near needed transportation and utility infrastructure.

Robert said the 20 MMgy engineering model was selected because it is an effective scale-up of the technology, allows the use of existing technologies, and allows for economies of scale. In addition, through the ligin biofuel product produced by Inbicon's process, a 20 MMgy demonstration scale plant will be able to produce enough energy to completely fuel its own process while providing enough power to offset approximately 50 percent of the 100 MMgy corn ethanol plant's energy needs.

Henriksen also announced working agreements with two U.S. grain ethanol plants to tailor Inbicon's 20 MMgy model to their individual operations. Global Ethanol LLC is the owner of one of these facilities, the other is yet to be disclosed.