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Aemetis: Nexsteppe Sorghum for Biofuels

October 12, 2015 in Biofuels, Ethanol, Technology by Rich Piellisch  |  No Comments

Crop Grows Very Quickly Using Salty, Low Quality Pump Water,
Can Be Converted to Cellulosic Ethanol or Other Renewable Fuels

Aemetis, Inc. says it’s harvested 12- to 15- foot tall biomass sorghum, a feedstock for low carbon advanced biofuels, grown in central California in approximately 90 days using “lower-quality pump water containing salts that typically damage crops.” Aemetis used Nexsteppe sorghum seeds.


Aemetis is moving to transition biofuel production from traditional starch-based feedstocks to renewable biomass feedstocks, like the fast-growth Nexsteppe sorghum pictured here.

“Nexsteppe’s sorghum is uniquely capable of growing a large amount of biomass in a short period of time using land that lacks quality water and where other plants may not grow,” said Aemetis chairman and CEO Eric McAfee said in a release. “Biomass sorghum can be converted to cellulosic ethanol or a variety of other renewable fuels through various available technologies.

“Aemetis has already processed about 80 million pounds of grain sorghum at its Keyes biorefinery, producing lower-carbon fuel ethanol.”

Transitioning from Starch to Renewable Biomass

Aemetis cites capacity of 60 million gallons per year at its ethanol plant, where it converts sugars to biofuels. The firm has “a multi-year strategy to transition its biofuel production from traditional starch-based feedstocks to renewable biomass feedstocks that can produce low-carbon, advanced biofuels.

“The transition is expected to evolve from corn to grain sorghum and ultimately to biomass sorghum and agricultural wastes available in California.”

Aemetis also owns and operates a 50-million-gallon-per-year renewable chemical and fuel production facility on the east coast of India, producing distilled biodiesel and refined glycerin.

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Source: Aemetis with Fleets & Fuels follow-up

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