Ready to Roll

Inbicon kicks up licensing plans
By Kris Bevill | May 10, 2012

After spending the past three years developing a licensing package and process guarantee, Inbicon A/S, cellulosic ethanol technology developer and subsidiary of Denmark’s DONG Energy A/S, is now actively marketing its technology in North America through newly formed Leifmark LLC. Named for Scandinavian explorer Leif Ericson (the first European to land in North America) and the Danish word for field—mark—Leifmark had nine Inbicon projects in various stages of development by mid-April, two of which are co-location projects with existing ethanol producers, according to founding partner Tom Corle. He and fellow Leifmark partner Paul Kamp will spend the rest of 2012 advancing those projects and focusing on integrating Inbicon’s cellulosic ethanol/power generation technology at more ethanol plants and power companies in the U.S. and Canada.

Inbicon’s technology utilizes agricultural residues like wheat straw and corn stover or energy crops to produce cellulosic ethanol, C5 molasses and lignin. A typical project would convert approximately 1,320 metric tons of biomass per day into 20 MMgy of ethanol. Corle says Leifmark has identified 80 of the existing 209 U.S. corn ethanol plants as being the best candidates to integrate Inbicon’s technology, based on the proximity of available biomass to the ethanol plant.

Inbicon has operated a 4 metric ton-per-hour demonstration-scale facility in Denmark since 2009 and has more than a decade of experience in biomass logistics there, Corle says. He’s been working with Inbicon for years and helped put together the commercial licensing and process guarantee package, which, he says, will help position major commercial projects. Tight financing situations have made it difficult to expand over the past few years, but Corle says he believes that environment is beginning to loosen up, allowing more ethanol producers to explore cellulosic ethanol production. Inbicon is also able to obtain loan guarantees through a Denmark export fund for equipment imported to the host country for its projects, he says.

Leifmark is also currently seeking to expand its team to broaden its project development. “We have a product and now we need to make sure we have the marketing team to accelerate the projects,” he says. —Kris Bevill