ICM, Inc. has successfully completed a 1,000-hour run of an integrated fiber campaign conducted at its pilot plant in St. Joseph, Mo., -- possibly the largest-scale fermentation integration of grain fiber to cellulosic ethanol technology to date.
ICM has developed and validated its proprietary Generation 1.5 Integrated Fiber to Cellulosic Ethanol technology for the production of cellulosic ethanol at existing grain ethanol plants. Through its Generation 1.5 model, ICM has proved substantial operating and capital expense cost savings over a traditional approach of cellulosic ethanol production.
"As far as we know, this is the largest-scale run that has been completed so far," said Monique Garcia at ICM. "The 1,000 hours of continuous production is a significant achievement because it qualifies these data for consideration of federal loan guarantee programs which can be utilized in the financing of new, advanced generation renewable energy technologies."
ICM's completion of the 1,000-hour run was achieved through the sequential completion of 24 15,000-gallon pilot fermenters and five 585,000 gallon commercial scale reactors.
Another significant achievement from the run was the demonstration that the dried distillers grains co-product of the integrated fiber cellulosic process has a sizeable concentration of protein-fat amounts that accompany the integrated fiber to ethanol process. Additionally, the standard DDGs market has indicated it will accept the feed ingredient from the process, which enables diversification of the co-product and expansion into new feed markets.
From both mechanical operations and process perspectives, the 1,000-hour run performed continuously and exceptionally well, an important aspect to use in a commercial operation.
Corn fiber yields greater than 100 gallons per ton were performed up to the 585,000-gallon fermentation scale with all inputs utilized at an economically feasible range.
Over the last eight weeks, ICM has demonstrated that its process and design has can capably and efficiently produce fuel ethanol from cellulosic material as a bolt-on technology to a Generation 1 plant. It also reinforced the significance of incentives to exist for greenhouse gas reduction per gallon of ethanol, a more efficient use of generation 1 feedstocks and the enabling of a progression to generation 2 production capabilities,
For more information on the technology of the ICM process visit the ICM website.