Genera breaks ground on Biomass Innovation Park

In Tennessee, US, biomass and bioenergy company Genera Energy has broke ground on its Biomass Innovation Park, a unique campus that, once completed, will integrate and optimise the entire biomass supply chain.

The campus, which is being desgined by Michael Brady Architects of Knoxville and constructed by J&S Construction of Cookeville, will be built nearby to Genera Energy and Dupont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol’s demonstration-scale biorefinery in Vonore.

The Biomass Innovation Park will be built on a 21-acre site and will provide harvesting, handling, storage, densification, pre processing and transportation for multiple feedstocks, including switchgrass, and will serve as the foundation for all biomass feedstocks used to create biofuels, biochemicals, bioproducts, biomaterials, biopower and bioenergy.

The park will feature two storage silos, an equipment shed, bale storage, office buildings, truck scale for feedstock receiving, pre-engineered biomass processing buildings and energy crop demonstration plots for switchgrass and other crops grown for bioenergy.

While the facility will initially process around 50,000 tonnes of switchgrass a year, it has been designed to treat an extensive range of second generation crops and biomass feedstocks.

‘The Biomass Innovation Park will be a unique and valuable asset in answering many of the questions farmers, biorefineries and the entire bioenergy industry are asking about sufficient, sustainable, scalable, cost effective supply chains for energy crops,’ said Kelly Tiller, president and CEO of Genera. ‘This facility will integrate biomass receiving, storage, separation, pre-processing and compaction,’ she continued.

Genera is looking to have phase 1 of the build completed by the end of 2010 in order to store and process the switchgrass harvested in the autumn.

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