Vertimass LLC, a California-based start-up company, has licensed an Oak Ridge National Laboratory technology that directly converts ethanol into a hydrocarbon blend-stock for use in transportation fuels.
The ORNL technology offers a new pathway to biomass-derived renewable fuels that can lower greenhouse gas emissions and decrease U.S. reliance on foreign sources of oil.
“Vertimass is very pleased to be partnering with ORNL to commercialize this revolutionary technology that can broaden the market for alternative fuels, ” said Vertimass chairman William Shopoff. “We have assembled a team of industry and technology leaders, including Dr. Charles Wyman, our president and CEO, who will take this novel catalyst from the lab to the marketplace. We see this technology as a significant step in moving the United States toward energy independence.”
The technology developed by ORNL’s Chaitanya Narula, Brian Davison and Associate Laboratory Director Martin Keller uses an inexpensive zeolite catalyst to transform ethanol into hydrocarbon blend-stock. The resulting liquid can be blended at various concentrations into gasoline, diesel, and jet fuels without negatively affecting engine performance. After mixing with petroleum-derived fuels, the blend-stock does not require modifications to the existing distribution infrastructure. [Read more…]