EASEL Biotechnologies is pioneering the discovery of breakthrough technologies which are not only green but also sustainable and competitive.
In the quest for cleaner energy, recycling CO2 to synthesize fuel and chemicals has long been revered as the Holy Grail. EASEL has achieved the previously impossible by genetically engineering microorganisms to make high-energy ‘higher-alcohols’ from glucose or directly from carbon dioxide.
The brains behind the company belong to co-founder James C. Liao, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at UCLA.
EASEL believes its next-generation technologies lead to lower emissions output and better air-quality than anything currently available, including corn ethanol, cellulosic ethanol or algal lipid processes.
One of the grand challenges of Green Chemistry is to recycle CO2 to synthesize fuel and chemicals. Previous efforts in this area involve indirect recycling of CO2 though plant or algae to obtain fuels. These multi-step processes reduced the overall efficiency of the resulting fuels while increases their costs significantly.
EASEL’s technology directly converts CO2 to higher alcohols (those with 3 to 8 carbons and higher energy content) or aldehydes using photosynthetic microorganisms through a one-pot bioprocessing. The simplicity of the process bypasses the time for plant biomass growth and the product is directly secreted out of the cell and easily recovered by simple gas stripping. This is the first success of direct synthesis of fuel and chemicals from CO2 and light with a significant productivity, bypassing that of all previously-available green energy sources.
The result is high-efficiency, low-emission, renewable alcohols for chemical building blocks and fuel.