Gevo’s proprietary integrated fermentation technology platform (GIFT®) has been designed to produce low-cost renewable isobutanol. This production technology is similar to ethanol production, except that Gevo replaces the ethanol-producing biocatalyst with its isobutanol-producing biocatalyst and then adds a separation unit.
GIFT® consists of two key elements:
1. Gevo’s technology team has developed proprietary yeast to efficiently convert fermentable sugars of all types into isobutanol through synthetic biology and metabolic engineering. The result is biocatalysts, proven to work efficiently at full scale.
2. A proprietary separation unit that continuously removes the isobutanol from the fermentation broth.
While Gevo has initially focused on corn as a feedstock, it has also developed isobutanol producing yeast that can convert sugars from cane, beets, wheat, cassava, molasses and other sugars.
Gevo has used the tools of biotechnology to replace the metabolic pathways in a robust yeast biocatalyst so that instead of making ethanol, the biocatalyst (cell factory) would now make isobutanol.
Gevo has also developed downstream technologies to convert alcohols into direct replacement hydrocarbon products.
Gevo has a large patent portfolio containing more than 450 patents and patent applications for the economic production of isobutanol, process innovations, and downstream product applications.
Gevo has extended the use of biocatalyst yeast to the conversion of cellulosic sugars, as part of the Northwest Advanced Renewables Alliance (NARA) project (a five-year project supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, and is comprised of 22 member organizations from industry, academia and government laboratories to use wood feedstocks).
The following videos provide more details on the work Gevo is doing with NARA: