Clean energy technology company LanzaTech has signed a memorandum of understanding with Mitsui Global Strategic Studies Institute (MGSSI), part of Mitsui and Co Ltd of Japan.

LanzaTech Chief Executive Dr Jennifer Holmgren says MGSSI will introduce LanzaTech’s proprietary gas fermentation technology throughout Mitsui. LanzaTech will concurrently execute a MOU with Mitsui & Co Plant Systems Ltd (MPS) - Mitsui’s engineered plants business group.

The proprietary microbe developed and owned by LanzaTech was selected based on its ability to produce ethanol from carbon monoxide without being adversely affected by the presence of N2 and CO2 which may also be present in the gas, such as from a BOS converter. A pilot plant to treat BOS gas has been in operation at New Zealand Steel since 2008. Only dust and any remaining O2 need to be removed from the flue gas. In February 2011, LanzaTech signed a memorandum of understanding with Posco for the implementation of its gas fermentation technology to convert the steelmaker’s CO from its BOS converters to ethanol and other value added products.

The LanzaTech technology not only prevents the emission of CO2 but also enables a valuable fuel grade ethanol or for use as a key chemical building block to make polymers, plastics and hydrocarbon fuels, including drop-in jet fuel.

MGSSI and MPS will play a strategic role leveraging Mitsui’s global position in a variety of industrial sectors, identifying value added opportunities for the application of LanzaTech’s process. The commercial deployment of LanzaTech’s technology will be accelerated by using Mitsui’s strong portfolio of capabilities in engineering, project development, financing and product off take contracts.