U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Advanced Manufacturing Office
Commercialized Succinic Acid Manufacturing Process to Support Lower-Cost Bioproducts
January 29, 2002
DOE's Office of Industrial Technologies (OIT), Applied CarboChemicals, Inc. (ACC), Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNL), and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) collaborated to commercialize bio-derived succinic acid as a new platform chemical based on renewable raw materials. It is energy efficient and environmentally friendly, leverages advances in DNA and fermentation technology that significantly lowers production costs and establishes a basis for the progression to commercial manufacturing operations.
Succinic acid is a dicarboxylic acid that is produced in relatively small volumes through the conversion o f petrochemicals. Currently, very high manufacturing costs limit succinic acid to low volume, specialty applications. Succinic acid is a highly functional chemical with a potentially broad application range in many diverse industries. To promote its use, the ACC team has combined biotechnology, efficient separation technology and novel chemicals synthesis to help enable economical manufacture of a broad range of products. The use of abundant and inexpensive feedstocks such as corn and other grains addresses the market demand for lower cost "green" alternatives to petrochemicals-based products.
The succinic acid platform technology provides many benefits for industry such as:
- renewable resource technology
- efficient process technology
- waste treating bio-degradable product
- limited waste emissions
- superior manufacturing costs
- small economics of scale
- a broadly commissioned production organism
- succinic acid versatility
- environmentally safe
- environmentally friendly
- green solvents
- herbicide enhancements
ACC, located in East Lansing, Michigan, is a development stage, specialty chemical company whose core business strategy is focused on the commercialization of a portfolio of high-value specialty chemicals from succinic acid.
For more information, please visit www.oit.doe.gov/agriculture/ or call the OIT Clearinghouse at 1-800-862-2086.