Florida Facility Will Demonstrate Commercial Capabilities and Create Local Jobs
South San Francisco, CA – February 3, 2010 – LS9, the Renewable Petroleum Company™, today announced the acquisition of an existing production facility in Okeechobee, Florida. The facility will be retrofitted to accommodate LS9’s proprietary one-step fermentation process that converts renewable raw materials into low-cost, low carbon transportation fuels and chemicals.
The project is designed to enable the production of 50,000-100,000 gallons of UltraClean Diesel™ by late-2010. This level of production will validate the commercial viability of LS9’s UltraClean Diesel™ technology before moving to full-scale commercial production.
The facility will generate a significant number of jobs in the local area. LS9 anticipates 15-20 operations jobs will be created throughout the demonstration period alone. The project is also expected to generate approximately 30-50 construction jobs over the six month retrofit period, as well as preserving job opportunities in the Okeechobee region through the company’s use of local suppliers and contractors.
“LS9’s acquisition of this state-of-the-art fermentation facility will deliver broad and deep benefits. It is a huge step for LS9, it represents significant promise for the U.S biofuels sector, and it benefits the Okeechobee economy,” said Bill Haywood, CEO, LS9. “The new facility will allow LS9 to demonstrate that our one-step manufacturing process is ready and capable of bringing low-cost, low-carbon fuels to market while creating and preserving jobs in the Okeechobee area.”
LS9 is the low-cost producer of renewable advanced diesel products. LS9’s UltraClean Diesel™ is the only finished diesel directly produced by fermentation of renewable raw materials in a single step. The company’s proprietary one-step process has higher yields and removes additional production costs associated with the multi-step processes required by other renewable diesel technologies. LS9’s technology also results in superior products that are designed to uniquely achieve optimal overall performance. A leader in synthetic biology, LS9 genetically engineers microorganisms to precisely produce fuels to have desired properties such as cetane, volatility, oxidative stability and cold-flow, while offering an 85% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions when compared to conventional diesel.
LS9 is currently producing significant amounts of UltraClean Diesel™ at its pilot plant in South San Francisco. The new Okeechobee facility will allow LS9 to move its technology from proven pilot capabilities to commercial demonstration scale production in 2010. Once the retrofit is complete, the facility will be the largest advanced biodiesel demonstration plant in the world.
“Moving technology from lab to full-scale commercial production is always an exciting challenge,” said Wei Huang, Vice President of Process Development, LS9. “With the progress we have achieved in moving our technology from the lab through the pilot plant, we are definitely ready to demonstrate at commercial scale. The Okeechobee facility is ideal for our needs.”
In addition to demonstration scale equipment, the new facility will house lab and pilot scale operations that LS9 will use to test and integrate cellulosic materials such as wood chips and agricultural waste into its production process. The use of cellulosic biomass will lead to even greater reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.
LS9’s proprietary one-step fermentation process is also capable of producing high-value chemicals used in making industrial and consumer products that are more environmentally friendly than conventional processes. For more information about LS9 products and capabilities, please visit www.ls9.com.
LS9, Inc., the Renewable Petroleum Company™, is a privately-held industrial biotechnology company pursuing the commercial development of renewable fuels and chemicals. LS9 is applying synthetic biology to produce proprietary biofuels that are compatible with existing fuel distribution and consumer infrastructure, as well as high-value industrial chemicals. LS9 is the pioneer in the commercial development of fermentation derived hydrocarbon biofuels and its patent-pending Renewable Petroleum™ products are custom engineered in the lab to address immediate market needs for clean energy alternatives to petroleum. The company was founded in 2005 and Chevron Technology Ventures, Flagship Ventures, Khosla Ventures, and Lightspeed Venture Partners have provided funding to date. The company has also entered into a strategic partnership with Procter & Gamble. LS9 is headquartered in South San Francisco, California. Additional information about LS9 products and capabilities is available at www.ls9.com.