EdeniQ technology available for licensing

By Ryan C. Christiansen | February 04, 2009
Web exclusive posted March 2, 2009, at 11:08 a.m. CST

EdeniQ, a Visalia, Calif., biofuels technology company, has announced the availability of its Corn3 Yield Enhancement Program for licensing. The company said the Corn3 technology, when fully adopted, can increase the yield in corn ethanol production from an industry average of 2.69 undenatured gallons per bushel of corn to more than 3 gallons per bushel, or a 10 percent gain in production.

"A plant producing 100 million gallons of ethanol per year can use Corn3 to reduce its annual corn bill by as much as $20 million," said Larry Gross, chief executive officer for EdeniQ.

EdeniQ's Corn3 technology can be adopted in one, two, or three phases, each of which provide approximately one-third of the 10 percent productivity gain that the entire package offers, according to Will Gardenswartz, a spokesman for EdeniQ. The three phases include both biological and mechanical processes. Gardenswartz said the first phase is a biological process that can be implemented without additional capital outlays. The second and third phases require additional investments in infrastructure to bring production yields as high as 3.11 gallons per bushel.

He said the technology has been successfully implemented at EdeniQ's large-scale pilot plant in Visalia and the company is now completing commercial-scale testing at several plants. Gardenswartz said non-disclosure agreements prevent him from revealing the names of the ethanol producers involved.

EdeniQ has been working with researchers at the Life Sciences and Bioengineering Center at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Mass., to identify the bacteria in the stomachs of termites that produce enzymes to break down cellulose in plants and to optimize the behavior of those bacteria, according to the Institute. The Worcester team has also been adapting EdeniQ's proprietary strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, more commonly known as Brewer's Yeast or Baker's yeast, to be more resistant to ethanol, enabling the yeast to ferment higher concentrations of the fuel. EdeniQ has also licensed technology from Tianjin University in Tianjin, China.

(For more information about EdeniQ, read "AltraBiofuels spins off cellulosic company.")