Competitive Edge

Research and Development

The primary projects developed during the 2012-2013 crop year in the Innovation and Technology area were the following:

2G Ethanol – Agreement entered into with the Danish company Inbicon, part of the DONG Energy group, to combine Odebrecht Agroindustrial’s industrial and commercial experiencewith Inbicon’s knowhow to speed up development of technologies for producing ethanol and other products from lignocellulosic raw material, such as sugarcane bagass, and fermentation techniques. The first tests took place in the 2012-2013 crop year, with three tons of sugarcane bagass to Denmark. The results from the first phase of the program will be used to study the feasibility of setting up a demonstration plant in Brazil by 2015-2016. This plant will be used for the final development phase and to validate the process.

Fermentation and industrial yeasts – The project has already produced gains of some R$46 million in the last two crop years. It is structured in two fronts: a) optimization of the process parameters of processes and training of the people involved in the operation and control of fermentation; b) development of industrial yeasts, in partnership with the Genetics and Expression Laboratories at Unicamp and UFScar, to use genetic manipulation to obtain yeasts that are more suited to large-scale production of ethanol.

Process simulation and optimization – This project will allow the integration of different technologies to maximize the value added to the biomass, and will make the best use of energy, by using simulators, advanced control techniques, etc.