ReEnergy assigns facility manager
ReEnergy Holdings LLC appointed William M. O’Reilly as facility manager for ReEnergy Black River, which is located at Fort Drum, near Watertown, N.Y. O’Reilly has more than 20 years of experience in the power generating industry. In his new position, he will be responsible for overseeing the operations of the facility. ReEnergy Black River was acquired by the company last year after being idled by its former owner. The power plant used to take in coal as its primary fuel. ReEnergy is investing more than $30 million this year to convert it into a biomass-fired power plant. Once operational, the facility is expected to produce 400,000 MWh of power per year.
GE Energy engines power Cambodian project
GE Energy signed a contract with the Cambodian industrial conglomerate Soma Group to supply two engines that will be installed at a new biomass gasification facility. Soma Group’s Hak Se mill biomass gasification project is located in Kamphong Cham, a rural rice milling region. India-based Ankur Scientific Energy Technologies Pvt. Ltd. is developing the facility, which will gasify rice to power two GE VHP 5904 Waukesha engines. Once operational, the facility will generate approximately 1.5 MW of electricity. A portion of the power will support the rice mill’s operations, while surplus electricity will be sold to the local grid.
UK establishes bioenergy research hub
The Supergen Bioenergy Hub was founded in the U.K. through a €3.5 million ($4.3 million) grant awarded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council as part of the Research Council’s U.K. Energy Program. Organizations participating in the hub include six research universities and 10 industrial partners. The hub is expected to initially take on 10 research projects, including those related to biomass combustion, torrefaction, biogas, biomass gasification, fast pyrolysis, and biofuels. The collaboration is directed by Patricia Thornley of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research at the University of Manchester.
Metabolix, Antibioticos partner for bioplastic production
Metabolix Inc. signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Antibioticos S.A. for the production of Mirel biopolymer resin. Antibioticos will produce the material at its manufacturing facility in Leon, Spain. Under the terms of the LOI, the two companies will immediately begin conducting a series of validation production runs to demonstrate fermentation and recovery of Mirel biopolymer resin on full production-scale equipment at the Leon facility. Matabolix and Antibioticos plan to enter into a definitive contract manufacturing agreement following the validation production runs and completion of economic and engineering feasibility studies.
NAABB selects division leader
Donald Danforth Plant Science Center Executive Director José Olivares was selected to serve as division leader of the National Alliance for Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts’ Bioscience Division. The NAABB is a consortium of leading scientists and engineers from universities, private industry and national laboratories that is led by the Danforth Center. The Bioscience Division of the alliance is based at Los Alamos National Laboratory. In his new position, Olivares will lead a team of 180 researchers and staff within the disciplinary groups that include genome science, biosecurity and public health, bioenergy and environmental science, and advanced measurement science. The Bioscience Division executes a portfolio of more than $70 million in research each year.