The Stan Mayfield Biorefinery Pilot Plant: preliminary results and current status
Thursday, May 1, 2014: 1:00 PM
Grand Ballroom F-G, lobby level (Hilton Clearwater Beach)
Ismael U. Nieves, Stan Mayfield Biorefinery, University of Florida, Perry, FL and L.O Ingram, Department of Microbiology and Cell Science, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
The use of biomass as a renewable source for the production of fuels and chemicals has the potential to decrease our dependency on oil and mitigate the environmental impact associated with the use of fossil fuels.  In recent years, we have developed a simplified process for the production of biofuels termed Liquefaction plus Simultaneous Saccharification and Co-Fermentation.  This process was used as a model to build the Stan Mayfield Biorefinery Pilot Plant in Perry, Florida with the collaboration of GP Cellulose (formerly Buckeye Industries) and funds provided by the State of Florida.  At the end of the process, an additional liquid-solid separation was added in order to use the liquid fraction as fertilizer (the chemicals used in the process serve a nutrients for new crops) and the solids to be burned as fuel or to make higher value products.  In this presentation, we will be talking about the scale-up of the process and the current status of the facility. 

Preliminary results from the scale-up of the pretreatment process show slight differences in the results when compared to the laboratory experiments.  In general terms, a slight increase in the severity of pretreatment was required for the large-scale process in order to replicate the results obtained in the laboratory.  However, the sugars released after enzymatic hydrolysis of the pretreated material were similar to those obtained at the lab scale.  Continuing work at the plant is currently focused on the optimization of the pretreatment, as well as the continued improvement of the liquefaction.