First generation biofuels include corn- and sugarcane-based ethanol and soybean- and rapeseed-based biodiesel.
TorchLight staff and associates have a long history of biodiesel industry and market development and have conducted
business with commercial plants across North America. Although first generation biofuels have received some negative
press in recent years, they are nevertheless the only transportation biofuels implemented at a large scale and do deliver
substantial energy security and rural development benefits. TorchLight can assist in feedstock procurement, supplier selection,
market development, logistics and facility planning.
Second generation or advanced biofuels are produced non-food biomass sources, including wood, grasses, agricultural residues
(eg. wheat and rice straw, corn stover), and purpose-grown lipids such as camelina. While not fully commercial at present,
they are anticipated to enter the market in the coming few years. Technical and economic challenges are still significant
for many second generation biofuels, but the potential is substantial and TorchLight is here to identify the best opportunities
for development. Biomass characteristics play a large role in the viability of second generation biofuels and having the right
feedstock-technology combination is essential.
TorchLight has completed feasibility assessments for both thermochemical (gasification & Fischer-Tropsch synthesis; pyrolysis oil and HTL biocrude upgrading) and
biochemical (hydrolysis, fermentation) conversion technology platforms. As technologies mature, TorchLight will keep clients informed
with the most up-to-date information on second generation biofuel competitiveness.