Issue Date: February 21, 2011
OPX Reaches Acrylic Cost Goal
Biobased chemicals start-up OPX Biotechnologies says its pilot process is producing acrylic acid for 70 cents per lb using corn sugar as feedstock, or 55 cents in Brazil using cane sugar. Petroleum-based acrylic sells for 75 cents per lb, OPX estimates. OPX uses genetically modified microbes to convert sugar into acrylic acid for use in products such as diapers, detergents, paints, and adhesives. The firm says its next step is to move to demonstration-scale production, where it hopes to hit a cost target of 50 cents per lb using corn sugar and less than 40 cents using cane sugar.
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