USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

Efficient isomer-selective biosynthesis of pinene from cellulosic feedstocks

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2012 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
20 New England Business Center Andover, MA 01810-1077
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2012
Title: Efficient isomer-selective biosynthesis of pinene from cellulosic feedstocks
Agency / Branch: DOD / NAVY
Contract: N68335-12-C-0298
Award Amount: $499,988.00


There is a need to find more efficient methods for producing high-density, liquid, tactical fuels for use in missile propulsion or as components to improve key performance characteristics of currently available jet and diesel fuels. Generation of such fuels from renewable sources including waste cellulose, grasses, waste agricultural material and forestry products will provide important national security benefits as compared with the use of raw petroleum products--a large fraction of which are imported. During Phase I research PSI, in collaboration with Dr. Michael Henson"s laboratory at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, explored development of a consolidated bioprocess for bioconversion of cellulosic biomass to high purity alpha- or beta-pinene precursors for high-density, liquid tactical fuel. That work will be extended during Phase II efforts. During the base effort PSI will pursue several genetic approaches to significantly increase beta-pinene production and export from the fungal mycelia, and will also pursue development of other key feedstocks including linalool and isopropanol for high-density, liquid hydrocarbon fuel production. In parallel UMass will develop efficient methods for solid-state fermentation. During the option period production of beta-pinene or isopropanol will be scaled up to produce several gallons of solvent.

Principal Investigator:

Anthony Ferrante
Group Leader, Biological
(978) 689-0003

Business Contact:

B. Green
President and CEO
(978) 689-0003
Small Business Information at Submission:

Physical Sciences Inc.
20 New England Business Center Andover, MA -

EIN/Tax ID: 042517090
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
University of Massachusetts
70 Butterfield Terrace
Amherst, MA 01003-9242
Contact: Carol P. Sprague
Contact Phone: (413) 545-0698