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DuPont and Broin to Partner on Cellulosic Ethanol from Corn Stover

Cellulosic processing could increase the ethanol yield of corn by around 200 gallons/acre. Click to enlarge. Source: DuPont

DuPont and Broin, the largest dry mill ethanol producer in the US, are combining DuPont’s bioengineering with Broin’s corn fractionation technology to advance the development of the production of cellulosic bioethanol from corn stover in the US.

Since 2003, DuPont and the US Department of Energy have jointly funded a four-year research program to develop technology to convert corn stover into ethanol. The Integrated Corn-Based BioRefinery (ICBR) is aligned with DuPont’s strategy to develop new innovations that can convert energy crops, such as grasses, and agricultural byproducts, such as straw and corn stalks, into biofuels and other renewably sourced materials. Partners in this research program include DuPont and its subsidiary Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., the Diversa Corporation, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Michigan State University and Deere & Company. (Earlier post.)

The Integrated BioRefinery technology will significantly increase the amount of ethanol per acre achievable by using both the corn grain and stover. The ICBR uses genetically engineered Zymomonas mobilis bacteria to convert both C-6 glucose sugars and the difficult to ferment C-5 xylose sugars to ethanol.

Broin and the US Department of Energy jointly funded a five-year research initiative to develop and improve dry mill fractionation with the assistance of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and South Dakota State University.

This project provided for the commercialization of Broin’s fractionation technology (BFrac), which together with Broin’s raw starch hydrolysis process (BPX), prepares the feedstock for fermentation. BFrac delivers higher ethanol yields, according to Broin, and it also creates additional value-added products and streams—including the fiber for the production of cellulose to ethanol.

We have worked over the last three years to develop a technology package that can efficiently break down the complex sugar matrix found in corn stover into ethanol from cellulose at a high yield. We are excited about the progress we have made and, while we still have to complete more research, we are ready to take the next steps to bring cellulosic ethanol to market.

—Thomas Connelly, DuPont Executive Vice President and Chief Innovation Officer

The partnership between Broin and DuPont brings together much of the needed technology that is important to the future development of cellulose to ethanol. The ability to combine the global science of DuPont with Broin's ethanol production technology puts us in position to make the commercialization of cellulose to ethanol a reality much sooner.

—Mike Muston, Broin Executive Vice President of Corporate Development

Broin is a specialized and integrated technology development, production, and marketing company with more than 20 years in the biorefining industry. The company has a history of advanced ethanol and biorefining process development. It currently manages 18 ethanol plants in five states with five more projects under construction.


allen Z

This could push corn ethanol yields close to sugar cane, and sweet sorghum levels.

Vin Diesel

10-15% of the U.S. milo (grain sorghum) crop is what is primarily used at the moment for ethanol. Sweet sorghum hasn't been developed into a viable ethanol fuel as of yet in the U.S., although there are plenty of believers (ask the sorganol folks). Does anyone know the yield differentials between milo and sweet sorghum (gallons per hectare)?



(gallons per ton dry matter)

(gallons per acre per year)

required (dry, per year) for production of 25 million gallons ethanol

for biomass for 25 million gallon-per- year facility
Sugarcane ("prepared cane")




Sugarcane - whole plant (no open field burning)




Sugarcane varieties (Puerto Rico & Hawaii)





Sweet Sorghum





Emmanuel Aubyn

Ladies and Gentlemen!
Since all alternative fuels also have hydrocarbon structure like gasoline; I am afraid these also can't actually give us the solution because they will also all produce enough CO2 the main cause of global warming.
I make research on electric cars myself and will therfore like to work with your R&D Groups of Du Pont and say GE on a conmbination of an alternator and integrated wheel induction motors.
The actual experiment I will like to do with you here is using an induction motor as an alternator. We need here in addition; rotor end rings,two special brushless slip rings and also two sets of conducting rails.
I will like to send my entire project to you per fax so I am asking you of your fax number. Please send your fax number to me per email.
This will be an ultimate solution for all electric vehicles and beyond. Thank you very much

John Westlake

Who do I contact to sell my switch grass too ? I own 13.41 Acres in Flushing, Michigan. please contact me at
Thank you
John Westlake

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