PARIS, June 20, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Amyris, Inc. (Nasdaq:AMRS) and Total (Paris:TOTF) announced today a successful demonstration flight at the Paris Air Show using a breakthrough technology that converts plant sugars into renewable jet fuel.
The Airbus A321 aircraft powered by two Snecma CFM56 jet engines flew from Toulouse to Paris with a blend of renewable jet fuel produced by Amyris and Total. This demonstration flight was in support of the French Initiative for Future Aviation Fuels, which seeks to produce and commercialize alternative, renewable and sustainable aviation fuels in France in the coming years. This was the second public demonstration flight with the Amyris-Total renewable jet fuel. In June 2012, an Embraer E195 jet flew with the renewable jet fuel produced from sugarcane in Brazil.
"This is a significant milestone in our strategic partnership with Total for biofuels. From developing the world's leading synthetic biology platform to producing and distributing renewable products globally, the Amyris-Total collaboration demonstrates the power of partnerships to drive innovation and deliver sustainable products," said John Melo, President & CEO of Amyris. "Today's flight is another step closer in achieving ASTM certification, which paves the way for the commercialization of our renewable jet fuel," Melo concluded.
"The air transport sector has an ambitious target: drastically reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 while commercial flights and demand for jet fuel will steadily grow. To that end, biofuels will play an important role along with improved aircraft energy efficiency. This demonstration flight illustrates the capacity of Amyris and Total to integrate, as of today, aeronautical biofuels in a concrete and reliable way," said Philippe Boisseau, President, Marketing & Services and New Energies and a member of the Executive Committee of Total. "As one of the world's biggest suppliers of aviation fuel, Total aims at widely offering this solution to airline customers. We are confident that we will be able to achieve this within the coming years."
About the Renewable Jet Fuel
The Amyris-Total renewable fuel was produced using engineered microorganisms that convert plant sugars into Biofene(R), Amyris's brand of renewable farnesene, a long-chain, branched hydrocarbon. In December 2012, Amyris began commercial production of Biofene at its industrial-scale production facility in southeastern Brazil. Amyris uses Brazilian sugarcane due to its availability, competitive cost, and the local industry's ability to meet international sustainability standards.
In addition to supporting the aviation industry's goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the Amyris-Total renewable jet fuel is designed to be compliant with Jet A/A-1 fuel specifications and outperform conventional petroleum-derived fuel in a range of performance metrics, including fit for purpose and greenhouse gas emission reduction, while maintaining performance quality. Amyris and Total expect the fuel to be commercially available as early as 2014, following approval by the ASTM International, the world's leading fuel standard setting body.
Amyris is an integrated renewable products company focused on providing sustainable alternatives to a broad range of petroleum-sourced products. Amyris uses its industrial synthetic biology platform to convert plant sugars into a variety of molecules -- flexible building blocks that can be used in a wide range of products. Amyris's initial portfolio of commercial products is based on Biofene, Amyris's brand of renewable farnesene, a long-chain hydrocarbon. Amyris is commercializing these products both as No Compromise(R) renewable ingredients in cosmetics, flavors and fragrances, polymers, lubricants and consumer products, and also as No Compromise renewable diesel and jet fuel. Amyris Brasil Ltda., a subsidiary of Amyris, oversees the establishment and expansion of Amyris's production in Brazil. More information about Amyris is available at www.amyris.com.
Total is one of the largest integrated oil and gas companies in the world, with activities in more than 130 countries. The Group is also a first rank player in chemicals. Its 97,000 employees put their expertise to work in every part of the industry -- exploration and production of oil and natural gas, refining and marketing, new energies, trading, and chemicals. Total is working to help satisfy the global demand for energy, both today and tomorrow.
Total is striving to diversify its supply to help meet growing energy demand in the long term. The Group holds a 66% stake in SunPower, a world leader in solar energy, and an 18.5% stake in Amyris, an integrated renewable products company. Additionally, Total is actively engaged in a number of renewable R&D projects, such as solar and biomass.