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Chempolis Starts Up Cellulosic Ethanol Line Using Formic-Acid Based Technology

Finland-based Chempolis Oy, a developer of biorefining technologies, recently expanded its biorefinery and R&D centre in Oulu, Finland to include the production of bioethanol. The new line was officially opened by the Finnish Prime Minister, Matti Vanhanen, on 4 May.

Concept of formico biorefinery. Click to enlarge.

Chempolis’ core technologies—formicofib, formicobio and formicochem processes—produce pulp, biofuels and biochemicals from non-wood and non-food raw materials such as straws, grasses, bagasse, energy crops, bast and leaf fibers via the use of a novel biosolvent, the key substance in which is formic acid.

Formico processes are self-sufficient in terms of their energy requirement and produce no greenhouse emissions, and their closed-loop circulation system minimizes water consumption, according to the company.

The third-generation biorefining technology that we have developed enables us to produce multiple products from agricultural residues using all the vegetable matter they contain, maximizing the added value that we can offer. This is a definite plus in terms of both operating costs and the environment.

—Matti Sundberg, the Chairman of Chempolis’ Board of Directors

Chempolis has invested some €20 million in its new biorefinery, which also functions as a development and marketing centre for testing customer-sourced raw materials and producing sample batches of bioethanol, biochemicals, and papermaking fibres. The plant is capable of processing 25,000 t/a of non-wood and non-food raw material.



I'd like to suggest that the jet set put their heads and $$$ together to finance an algal jet-fuel project. Just think of how much better than offsets burning a real renewable jet-fuel in your G5 would be. You could form a Green Jet club and fly all over creation without the guilt attached to fossil jet setting today.

Green abundance. It's growing daily.

Henry Gibson

Mushrooms and cows and goats demonstrate that all biomass can be made into food. How about the guilt that comes from knowing how many people have too low a caloric intake because of biofuel used in a SUV or a JET. Norway may still be making pet food out of North Sea methane. The UK gave it up and got Mad Cow disease by feeding dead sheep to cows instead. ..HG..


Branson and others are working on green fuel for jets. This makes sense in a world with reduced oil reserves where we still want jet travel. I think we can have a modern world while using less fossil fuels, we just need to get on with it and show that it can be done.


Henry, how would growing algae for lipid extraction cause "too low caloric intake" in anyone?? Plant or animal?

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