Lignol Energy Corporation (“LEC” or “the Company”), a leading technology company in the advanced biofuels and renewable chemicals sector, today announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Lignol Innovations Ltd. (“LIL”) has received notice from the United States Patent and Trademark Office that it has recently issued a patent to LIL covering inventions made in the field of lignin composition of matter. This follows receipt of a recent patent issued in Canada covering similar claims related to the use of lignins in carbon fibre and brings to twelve the number of patents awarded to the Company to date, including five this calendar year.
These two recently issued patents cover inventions associated with the chemical properties and functional attributes of a wide range of lignin derivatives, and provide significant barriers to other players wishing to enter the field. Other patents awarded this year have provided added geographic coverage of Lignol’s biorefining process technology-related patents in several countries.
“When producing next generation biofuels from renewable, non-food feedstocks like wood- chips, roughly 25% of the output is lignin. Companies can burn the lignin for its calorific value of approximately 5 cents a pound, or utilize Lignol’s technology to realize values of 50 cents to $2 per pound as a substitute for certain petroleum-based inputs in a variety of applications, such as resins, binders, coatings, carbon fibre and thermoplastics”, said Ross MacLachlan, President and CEO. “Our high performance lignin is proving to be well suited for many of these applications. One of the strengths of our patents which cover lignin composition of matter is that they are applicable irrespective of the process used for lignin production – our own or a competitor’s. This creates commercial opportunities for Lignol not only from our own planned biorefineries, but also from licensing our technology to competitors and new entrants into the cellulosic ethanol and biorefining sector.”
Lignol’s growing intellectual property portfolio consists of more than ninety patent applications in various stages of prosecution of which twelve have been approved. The portfolio includes twenty-one patent families relating to processes, systems, the composition of lignin and other extractives, and lignin applications. Lignol also owns several trademarks and a significant body of trade secrets.
About Lignol Energy Corporation (“LEC”):
LEC (TSXV: LEC) currently owns an 11.2% stake in Australian Renewable Fuels Ltd., and upon completion of the planned acquisition of additional shares which are expected to close on or about November 6, 2012, will own 14.9% of the shares of ARW, and owns 100% of the issued and voting shares of Lignol Innovations Ltd. (“LIL”). LEC also intends to invest in, or otherwise obtain, equity interests in energy related projects which have synergies with its biorefining technology.
ARW is the largest biodiesel producer in Australia owning three plants with a total nameplate capacity of 150 million litres per annum. ARW’s three plants were built at an aggregate cost of approximately A$150 million. ARW has made significant changes in recent years to become a cost effective producer of high quality biodiesel to address growing biofuel demand in the Australian market.
LIL is a leading technology company in the advanced biofuels and renewable chemicals sector undertaking the development of biorefining technologies for the production of advanced biofuels, including fuel-grade ethanol, and other renewable chemicals from nonfood cellulosic biomass feedstocks. LIL’s modified solvent based pretreatment technology facilitates the rapid, high-yield conversion of cellulose to ethanol and the production of value-added biochemical co- products, including high purity HP-LTM lignins. HP-LTM lignin represents a new class of high purity lignin extractives (and their subsequent derivatives) which can be engineered to meet the chemical properties and functional requirements of a range of industrial applications that until now has not been possible with traditional lignin byproducts generated from other processes. LIL is executing on its development plan through strategic partnerships to further develop and integrate its core technologies on a commercial scale.
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Lignol Energy Corporation, press release, 2012-10-25.