1140 O’Brien Drive
Menlo Park, CA 94025
For Immediate Release
Menlo Park, CA – July 9, 2014 – Calysta, Inc. (www.calysta.com), today announced the company has achieved 8-fold improved performance over traditional fermentation technologies in a high mass transfer bioreactor. The bioreactor technology is under development for efficient methane-to-liquids fermentation processes, enabling rapid, cost-effective methane conversion into protein, industrial chemicals and fuels.
The improved performance was achieved in the research phase of a program funded in part by the Department of Energy’s ARPA-E program (http://arpa-e.energy.gov) under the REMOTE program (Reducing Emissions using Methanotrophic Organisms for Transportation Energy), awarded in September 2013. Calysta develops sustainable industrial products using novel natural gas conversion technology using methane.
“Stirred tanks, which are traditionally used for fermentation processes, are extremely inefficient for gas-fed fermentation, achieving only a small percentage of the potential productivity at high cost,” said Josh Silverman, Ph.D., Calysta Chief Technology Officer. “Calysta’s technology is the only validated, commercial scale process available to directly convert natural gas into biological products. Using Calysta’s proprietary reactor design – from our recent acquisition of BioProtein – we have now demonstrated the ability to substantially improve the rate and efficiency of methane usage in a bioreactor. The improved technology platform we are developing can be applied to a wide range of gaseous feedstocks and biological products, addressing the key bottlenecks in developing low cost, sustainable fermentation processes.”
Calysta’s Biological Gas-to-Liquids® platform is based on biological conversion of methane, a greenhouse gas ~20 times more harmful than carbon dioxide. Methane is generated by the natural decomposition of plant materials and is a component of natural gas. Methane is also generated from society’s organic wastes and is produced from such activities as waste-water treatment, decomposition within landfills and anaerobic digestion. However, other gaseous feedstocks such as carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and hydrogen are also abundant in specific geographies around the world.
“Gaseous feedstocks such as methane represent the next generation of biological feedstocks due to their abundance, sustainability, low cost, and the beneficial climate impact of their capture,” Dr. Silverman added. “However, due to limited solubility, optimizing and improving reactor technology is a key bottleneck in the successful deployment of gas-fed biological systems. It is important to note that Calysta’s new developments in this area can be applied to a wide range of both feedstocks and products.”
Calysta, Inc. (www.calysta.com) Menlo Park, CA, is an innovator in industrial products from sustainable sources. Calysta Energy is developing new Biological Gas-to-Liquids® and Biological Gas-to-Chemicals® technologies using methane, the primary component of natural gas. The technology allows conversion of a plentiful energy resource into high value chemicals and transportation fuels with cost and performance advantages over current processes. Calysta Nutrition develops and commercializes fish and livestock nutritional products based on gas fermentation of methane. Calysta Nutrition has operations in Stavanger, Norway.