Clariant

Clariant collaborates with Indonesia's Pertamina in advanced biofuels assessment

  • Indonesian oil & gas company Pertamina and Clariant collaboratively evaluate the feasibility of sunliquid® technology to convert available regional feedstocks into advanced biofuels
  • Technology evaluation and conceptual engineering study also cornerstone to the work
  • Pertamina presented project collaboration details at Hannover Messe

Munich, April 19, 2021 – Clariant, a focused, sustainable, and innovative specialty chemical company, is working with Indonesia's state-owned oil and gas corporation, Pertamina, since 2018 to evaluate and test the feasibility of Clariant's sunliquid® technology to process available regional feedstocks in Indonesia into the advanced biofuel, cellulosic ethanol.

Indonesia has a vast potential of untapped biomass, from empty fruit bunches to palm leaves, that could be converted into cellulosic ethanol. Their present-day utilization is negligible and, until now, both feedstocks are frequently burnt, causing air pollution.

In Indonesia, ethanol demand is expected to increase dramatically, spurred primarily by a nationwide E10 ethanol blending mandate. Advanced fuel technology solutions, such as Clariant's sunliquid® process, are vital to match the feedstock potential with the increasing ethanol demand in the country.

Since 2018, Pertamina and Clariant have been assessing how to bridge this gap. The collaboration first focused on techno-economic performance analysis, and the testing of empty fruit bunches and palm leaves. The final results of the assessments proved that the sunliquid® technology can successfully convert both feedstocks into cellulosic ethanol while achieving a good conversion yield.

Further, a recently conducted conceptual engineering study quantified process balance, facility specification, and process economics in detail. This lays the groundwork for Pertamina's continued consideration of investing in commercial-scale advanced biofuel production plants.

"We are delighted that Pertamina, a renowned energy player in Indonesia, has chosen our sunliquid® process for this technology and feedstock assessment, as well as for a process design study for a commercial-scale plant based on regional feedstocks," said Christian Librera, Clariant's Vice President and Head of Business Line Biofuels and Derivatives. "The excellent results demonstrate once again the flexibility and efficiency of our sunliquid® technology platform for different lignocellulosic feedstocks," he added.

"As other international oil companies start to navigate energy transition, Pertamina has committed to play its part by fostering clean energy development to reduce global carbon emissions. Our new and strong aspiration is underpinned by essential judgment about the forthcoming future, that clean energy is the key to energy sustainability," said Andianto Hidayat, Pertamina's Vice President of Downstream Research and Technology Innovation.

"As a result, we are strengthening our business portfolio by producing green fuel, such as biodiesel, green aviation fuel, and bioethanol using palm residues that are abundant in Indonesia. We are embracing a robust growth in clean energy by building two green refineries and optimizing domestic resources to ensure Indonesia’s energy independence," he added.

The realization of commercial-scale, advanced biofuels projects based on regionally available feedstocks, could help Indonesia become more independent from foreign fossil fuel imports and secure its national energy supply. In 2015, the Indonesian government introduced national biofuels targets. The bioethanol mandate in transport for the non-Public Sector Service Obligation (PSO) aims for a 10% bioethanol content as a gasoline additive and will be realized in the next few years.

Pertamina presented the project results at the Hannover Messe held virtually from 12th – 16th April. Indonesia was this year’s event partner country.

sunliquid® IS A TRADEMARK OF CLARIANT REGISTERED IN MANY COUNTRIES.

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Notes for editors

www.clariant.com

Clariant is a focused, sustainable and innovative specialty chemical company based in Muttenz, near Basel/Switzerland. On 31 December 2020, the company employed a total workforce of 13 235. In the financial year 2020, Clariant recorded sales of CHF 3.860 billion for its continuing businesses. The company reports in three business areas: Care Chemicals, Catalysis and Natural Resources. Clariant’s corporate strategy is based on five pillars: focus on innovation and R&D, add value with sustainability, reposition portfolio, intensify growth, and increase profitability.

www.sunliquid.com
www.clariant.com/romania

sunliquid® is an innovative biotechnological method for producing cellulosic ethanol from agricultural residues such as cereal straw, corn stover, or sugar cane bagasse. In the completely integrated process, highly optimized, raw material-specific biocatalysts decompose cellulose and hemicellulose in high yields under stable processing conditions into fermentable sugar. The process-integrated production of the biocatalysts offers flexibility and reduces production costs. In the next step, an optimized fermentation organism simultaneously converts C5 and C6 into ethanol with high yields and short reaction times. A highly optimized purification process is instrumental in enabling all the energy required for the process to be derived from the process by-products like insoluble lignin. Since July 2012, Clariant has been operating a precommercial plant in Straubing, Germany, which produces up to 1,000 metric tons of cellulosic ethanol every year, confirming technical and economic performance. In September 2018, Clariant broke ground for its first-of-its-kind commercial facility in Podari, Romania, where the construction is currently underway. Clariant licenses its sunliquid® technology platform globally. So far, five license agreements have been concluded with renowned industry players in Slovakia, Poland, Bulgaria, and China.

www.pertamina.com

PT Pertamina (Persero) or Pertamina is an Indonesian state-owned oil and natural gas corporation based in Jakarta. Pertamina has now journeyed with over six decades of experience in the energy industry and continues to develop by strengthening its commitment in the fields of New and Renewable Energy and Business Diversification.

Related images

Pertamina's project team visiting Clariant's pre-commercial sunliquid® plant in Straubing, Germany at the end of 2019. 
(Photo: Clariant)

 

 

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Stefanie NehlsenStefanie Nehlsen
Clariant International Ltd

+41 61 469 63 63
stefanie.nehlsen@​clariant.com

Siria NielsenSiria Nielsen
EMG

+31 164 317 036
snielsen@​emg-marcom.com
@siriajonna

 

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