New Joint Venture Targeting Biofuels from Plasma Arc Gasification of Waste
11 April 2007
|The Skygas reactor.|
MPM Technologies Inc. (MPM) and Losonoco Inc. have formed a new joint venture company, Losonoco Skygas, LLC, to develop biofuel and chemical manufacturing facilities based on the Skygas waste gasification process.
MPM is an environmental engineering company that has done extensive development work on the Skygas plasma arc gasification process and owns the worldwide rights to the technology. Losonoco builds, owns and operates manufacturing facilities for ethanol and biodiesel and focuses on commercializing technologies that use waste streams as feedstock for the biofuels.
In particular, Losonoco is acquiring and re-commissioning a shuttered corn ethanol facility in Florida, which it intends to bring back into production and to use as a platform to build an integrated biomass-to-ethanol facility base on the Skygas gasification process.
Losonoco Skygas is proposing the construction of a 125-ton per day biomass gasifier co-located and integrated with the corn ethanol facility in Florida. In the first phase, the syngas will replace natural gas used in the ethanol production process. In a second phase, the syngas will be used to manufacture ethanol via catalytic conversion.
The core of the process is the Skygas gasifier which converts the feedstock at moisture contents of up to 55% to a synthesis gas high in carbon monoxide and hydrogen. Utilizing different catalytic processes, the syngas can be converted into ethanol, methanol, DME and diesel, or it can be used to manufacture ammonia or to generate electricity.
The Skygas reactor operates at lower temperatures than other plasma arc gasifiers, and consumes less power, according to MPM.
MPM acquired Skygas Technology in 1986, and several pilot and demonstration plants were built in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
MPM is transferring ownership to the joint venture of the world-wide licenses for the Skygas gasification technology together with all engineering, operational and other data and intellectual property that it owns and developed through its former joint venture agreement with Smogless S.p.A.
Losonoco Inc. will fund the further development of the technology and the construction of the 125-ton per day gasification plant in Florida. The initial membership interests in the joint venture will be 75% MPM Technologies Inc. and 25% Losonoco Inc. This will move to a 50:50 ownership once the development work is completed.
Losonoco Skygas, LLC will further seek appropriate alliances with industrial partners for the development of processes for the manufacture of ethanol, methanol, DME, diesel and ammonia and for the production of electricity in those markets where electricity from biomass or waste carries a high premium value.
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