Praj Industries, a process solutions company for bio-ethanol, alcohol and brewery, among others, today announced setting up of the second generation (2G) Cellulosic ethanol plant for about $25 million (about Rs 150 crore).
The firm also provides solutions for water, wastewater and critical process equipment.
The plant will be set up at Shirala in Maharashtra's Sangli district. Company's Executive Chairman Pramod Chaudhari did the groundbreaking today along with Mansinghrao Naik, Chairman of Viraj Alcohols and Allied Industries Ltd (VAAIL), the company said in a statement.
"The 2G Cellulosic ethanol demo plant will operate on different variety of biomass with a capacity of 100 dry tonnes of biomass per day, which includes agricultural wastes such as corn stover, cobs and bagasse," It added.
"Praj expects the project cost to be in the range of $25 million (Rs 145-150 crore)," the company said, adding that for this project, Praj will associate with VAAIL, an existing ethanol producer located in Western Maharashtra and a long term client of Praj.
VAAIL will provide the land and allied services for the smooth operation of the project.
"The greenhouse gas savings from Cellulosic ethanol is greater than those from first generation crop-based bio-fuels as well as fossil-based fuel and hence this project will play a vital role in reducing carbon footprints.
"The project site at Shirala gives us a locational advantage in terms of sourcing of biomass, utilities and manpower. We are delighted to work with VAAIL who has been our long term client," Chaudhari said.
According to the company, the ethanol demo plant will enable Praj to consolidate its 6 years of research and development efforts, starting with laboratory trials to pilot scale trials.
The same plant will also enable Praj to develop various biochemicals and bio-products, besides developing the entire value chain including biomass handling and biomass composition and its impact on the operations, the company said.