Versalis, Eni’s chemical company, has acquired the technology to produce enzymes for second-generation ethanol from Dutch materials firm DSM. The agreement has a strategic value for Versalis as it integrates with proprietary Proesa technology, applied at the Crescentino plant for the production of sustainable bioethanol and chemical products from lignocellulosic biomass, improving the competitiveness of technology and production.
Enzymes are essential for the production of second-generation sugars as they allow the saccharification of biomass. Second generation sugars are then transformed, through fermentation processes, into cellulosic ethanol – “advanced bioethanol” – or into other chemical intermediates. Bioethanol, produced through Proesa technology, is used for the formulation of petrol with a renewable component.
The acquisition of this technology strengthens Versalis’ position as a leader in chemistry from renewable sources. This agreement also provides an important boost to both the Crescentino plant development program and the Proesa technology, which bolsters the path towards decarbonisation for the Eni chemical company.
DSM enzymes have already been successfully tested at Versalis research centres for their use in conjunction with the proprietary Proesa technology. Furthermore, starting from the technology acquired, Versalis plans to proceed with research activities to ensure further development in this area, it adds.