Industry News

Metabolic Explorer Bio-PDO Program Achievements and Schedules

Published on 2008-09-05. Author : SpecialChem

METabolic EXplorer has developed three cost-competitive bulk chemical production programs for which the company has already created tailored cell factories. These significant advantages are derived from the company's unique integrated and proprietary technology platform. METabolic EXplorer, in 2007, started small with bio-production at lab scale and has more recently moved into the pre-industrial pilot phase for business partnerships.

  • 1,3 Propanediol (PDO), Butanol and 1,2 Propanediol (MPG) METabolic EXplorer's best-in-class bioprocesses applied to renewable feedstock enables the company to achieve a cost reduction of over 30% when compared to the existing chemical process.
  • 1,3 Propanediol (bio-PDO) produced with a high purity standard (superior to 99.5%) is a cost competitive alternative to other sources of PDO. This non-petroleum specialty glycol can also serve the coatings and resins industry.
  • Butanol where METabolic EXplorer is more focused on the chemical intermediate in plastic or acrylic industries markets.

The METEX bio-PDO program is on schedule:

  • In January 2008, METabolic EXplorer announced that a licensed patent had been granted in the U.S.A. (Patent No US 7,267,972) covering a method for producing PDO using crude glycerin, a by-product of the bio diesel supply chain and any crude glycerin obtained from renewable sources. A patent covering this PDO production method has already been granted in Europe. METabolic EXplorer also filed a Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) application for its first purification patent, and this patent also concerns the PDO project. The PCT application reserves the rights of METabolic EXplorer to file the patent application in more than 80 foreign countries that are members to the treaty. This patent, once granted, will provide protection of the PDO process economics and the method developed will allow METabolic EXplorer to deliver its first samples.
  • In May 2008, METabolic EXplorer announced that it obtained the first samples of one of its proprietary products, PDO (1,3-propanediol). These samples, with a purity above 99,5%, have been produced by fermentation of crude, industrial glycerol (83%purity grade), followed by a proprietary, patent-protected purification step.
  • By the end of 2008, METabolic EXplorer will have produced quantitative samples of PDO for testing and qualification purposes in all the different areas of utilization of PDO. Those samples will be produced through the pre-pilot scale facility built by METabolic EXplorer.
  • In the second semester of 2009, METabolic EXplorer will run a significant piloting plant (which will be large enough to prove the industrial and business feasibility of Metex PDO technology) for its bio-PDO, using proprietary fermentation and purification processes from industrial crude glycerine.

Source: METabolic EXplorer

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