Thank you for having me here. I’m Sam Nejame and my company is Promotum, a consulting firm focused on commercialization of next gen biofuels and green routes to chemicals. We provide business development, corporate development, due diligence, strategic planning and other services that help grow companies and markets. Poll: Know your audience. Show of hands. How many policy? Commercialization? Scientists?
This is a good time to distinguish between n-buoh and iso-buoh. Both have similar energy content and vapor pressure and solubility characteristics, but iso has a higher octane number (R+M/2) and is a better choice for blending w/gasoline. n-buoh has higher a higher cetane number and is a better choice for blending with diesel.
Compatibility w/oil infrastructure. Butanols are not corrosive to aluminum (etoh is). Butanols are much less hydrophilic and can be transported through existing pipelines. Reduction in blend vapor pressure means fewer VOC emissions and lower cost formulations can be used in EPA non attainment areas.
Fermentation of Clostridium for the production of acetone, n-buoh and etoh is the oldest industrial fermentative process. Originally utilized for the production of acetone and smokeless gunpowder. In the 1930s butanol’s value for paints and coatings was realized. Production of butanol via ABE continued up until the 1950s when the modern petro-chemical industry was born. China continues to use traditional ABE fermentation.
Although ABE is no longer current technology it forms the basis of many new bio routes to butanol. Actually half a mixed acid fermentation: acetic, propionic, butyric. Metabolic shift conversion to acetone, butanol, etoh. Traditionally in a 3:6:1 ratio A:B:E
Toxicity to the organism (~1% concentration) impedes growth and product formation. Low product concentrations mean high water separation costs, Low yields increase size of all up front materials handling
So what replaced ABE? The creation of the modern petro-chemical industry created a new cost effective route to butanol.
At a refinery naptha is cracked to propylene Propylene is the primary raw material and cost driver of n-buoh production. The oxo process produces ~90% n-buoh and ~10% iso-buoh.
Biggest producers are German giant BASF and Dow Chemical.
Cost curve shows every butanol facility manufacturing capacity and cost of production. Each bar is a facility. Width is capacity. Height is cost. Least competitive plants (far right) are eastern European and Japanese plants.
Price of butanol is typically 2X-3X the price gasoline and ethanol.
So, who thinks there’s a business in butanol?
What’s changed to make biological processes competitive again?
An optimistic projection for the future of butanol manufacture and acceptance. Some predict the entire petro chemical butanol market will be replaced with bio-butanol in 5 years. Highly unlikely.
We are likely to see some ethanol facilities retrofitted by Gevo, Butamax and Cobalt. It is very possible we will see 4 or 5 (80MM gallon plants) go online They will initially sell into the chemicals market for isobutanol (and possibly n-buoh) If the facilities are economical we will see them enter the fuels market within 10 years
Butanol as Fuel – View From the Field NREL March 11, 2010 Sam Nejame Promotum 1
Agenda• What is Butanol?• Brief History• ABE Process• Today’s Butanol From Petroleum• The Future of Butanol Fuels• Questions 2
What is Butanol?• Family of 4 Carbon Alcohols• Most common forms are normal butanol (n-buoh) andiso-butanol (i-buoh)• n-buoh primarily used to make butyl acrylates forcoatings and adhesives• Both n-buoh and iso-buoh have good fuel properties 3
Butanol Physical & Fuel Properties Physical Property i-butanol n-butanol EthanolDensity at 20°C (g/cm³) 0.802 0.810 0.794Boiling Point at 1 atm (⁰C) 108 118 78Water Solubility at 20⁰C (g/100mL 8.0 7.7 Misciblewater)Net Heat of Combustion (BTU/gal) 95,000 93,000 80,000R+M/2 103.5 87 112Blend RVP (psi at 100⁰F) 1 5.0 4.3 18-22 Promotum, Gevo 4
Summary Comparison Butanol to Ethanol Fuel • Higher energy content • Less hydrophilic • More compatible w/oil infrastructure • More compatible w/installed base of autos • Reduces blend vapor pressure • Less corrosive • Iso-butanol works well with gasoline • n-butanol works well with diesel 5
Butanol a Brief History• Acetone, Butanol, Ethanol (ABE) Process• First Industrial Fermentation Commercialized (1918)• Clostridium acetobutylicum bacteria• Acetone for Cordite• Later butanol for butyl paint & coatings (1930’s)• RAF planes flew on butanol during WWII• Petroleum based production becomes cheaper (1950s) 6
ABE Fermentation Reaction KineticsRamey & Yang 7
Problems w/Traditional ABE Process • Toxicity to the organism • Low product concentrations • Low yield 8
Butanol Production From Petroleum (1950s-Present) • Production of Butanol by oxo Alcohol Process • Players & Market Share • US & Global Manufacturing Capacity • Price history of butanol, ethanol, gasoline 9
Butanol Production From the oxo Process • Global market for nbuoh is 3.8 M mtons/Yr • Global iso-buoh is ~ 0.4 M mtons/YrMetex 10
Market Share of Leading n-Butanol ProducersMetex 11
Global Butanol Industry Capacity - Facility Cost Curve Butanol Cash Cost ($ / mton)Source: Tetra Vitae, SRI; company analysis Cumulative Capacity (K mtons)Assumptions: $70 oil, range of feedstock cost 12
The Future of Bio-Butanol Fuels“Our goal is to build asupply chain fromlignocellulose to butanol.”Tony Hayward, CEO British Petroleum 15
Summary Bio-Butanol Process Goals • Power & Price of Biotechnology Tools... systems biology, pathway engineering... • Over expression butanol • Suppression of other pathways • Organism tolerance • Improving yield • Increasing productivity (rate) • Flexible feedstocks 16
Status Domestic Butanol CompaniesCompany Bug Bug Molecule Fermentation Separation Development Strategy Process Strategy StatusGevo Yeast GMO UCLA iso-buoh Semi batch vacuum flash in situ 2010 Operating pilot in Valine removal followed by St. Johns, MO. 2011 metabolism distillation trains CommercialCobalt Biofuels Clostridium Non GMO strain n-buoh for Continuous modified vapor compression 2010 pilot 10-35k gpy reduced etoh blending ABE Fermentation distillation 2011 demo 2-5m gpy and acetone w/gasoline, 2012 commercial diesel, jetTetra Vitae Clostridium Non GMO n-buoh and Semi batch "AB" Carbon dioxide 2009 300 liter bench beijerinckii selected for acetone 2:1 Fermentation stripping continuous 2010 10,000 liter pilot reduced etoh in situ removal production followed by distillation trainsButyl Fuel Clostridiums GMO & mutant n-buoh Continuous two stage stripping following Unknown Aceto & tyro strain dual path anaerobic immobilized cell fermentation bioreactorsSyngas Biofuels Fermentation of GMO n-buoh Thermochemical NA UnknownEnergy Syngas catalyst 17
Status International Butanol CompaniesCompany Bug Bug Molecule Fermentation Separation Development Strategy Process Strategy StatusButamax 1.Clostridium GMOs iso-buoh Semi batch continuous in situ 2010 Salt End Hull, UK(DuPont/BP) 2.E.Coli removal followed by 2013 Commercial distillation trains Additional Feedstocks 2013+Green Clostridium. GMOs high n-buoh Continuous In situ removal Building demo in India.Biologics (UK) Mixed tolerance (4%) fermentation unknown. Consulting w/Chinese populations firmsMetex (FR) "Well known GMOs n-buoh Unkown In situ removal Unknown bacteria“ unknown.Butalco Yeast GMOs unclear Unkown In situ removal Unknown(Switzerland) unknown.China Clostridium Currently n-buoh Migrating from May include in situ 2010 100MM gpy selected traditional ABE removal traditional ABE. 201X strain. Fermentation. migration beyond ABE. Migrating to Plans to add 350 MM GMOs gpy new capacity. 18
Bio-Butanol Projecting the 3rd Wave 19Green Biologics
Bio Iso-Butanol Fuel Commercialization Forecast ---$6bn chemicals------------------------------------------------- 20Promotum
Thoughts on Butanol Adoption1 Pricing/Economics have to Markets for butanol, petroleum and sugar work feedstocks change daily.2 Avoid Food v. Fuel Round II Butanol is a better alcohol, but for now corn is still the feedstock3 Tax credits, biorefinery grants, Need to be extended to butanol. Government and loan guarantees private investment are necc.4 Enlist/Co-exist w/current Infighting will slow production & adoption. Oil ethanol producers companies like BP (Butamax) may not be politically correct market driver.5 Autos/Engine makers must May be catalytic converter issues. Manufacturers approve warrantees essential.6 Consumer education Higher energy content means a gallon isnt a gallon. Odor maybe a problem.7 Technology improvements Anything beyond ethanol is new territory at this must continue scale 21
Acknowledgements• Jim Evangelow Chemical Strategies• Gorden Cheng ChemaLogic• Jay Kouba Tetra Vitae• Hans Blachek University of Illinois-Urbana• Adam Schubert Butamax• Ron Bray SRI Consulting 22