Butanol (C4H10O) or butyl alcohol is an alcohol that can be used as a solvent or fuel. Biobutanol refers to butanol that has been produced from biomass. Biobutanol is produced by a microbial fermentation, similar to ethanol and can be made from the same range of sugar, starch or cellulosic feed stocks. Biobutanol production is currently more expensive than ethanol so it has not been commercialized on a large scale. However, biobutanol has several advantages over ethanol and is currently the focus of substantial research and development.
Bio butanol industry offers a unique set of investment opportunities, depending on the location and proximity of available biomass as well as demand and dynamics.
Similar to synthetic butanol, bio butanol is used in paints, lacquers and other surface coatings; chemical markets including plastics and synthetic rubber; and for fuels production.
Bio Butanol Blended Fuels
Bio butanol blended fuels are especially valuable for use in marine engines, as they are highly resistant to phase separation in the presence of water and have been demonstrated to offer a high level of compatibility with the materials commonly employed in engines and fuel-handling equipment.
Bio-butanol is expected to fulfill about 20% of the global domestic gas and diesel requirement. Butanol is being considered as a suitable and safe biofuel alternative to ethanol. Bio-butanol is mixed in various proportions with gasoline to be used as Bio-Fuels, as a gasoline, diesel and jet fuel replacement. It is used in adhesives, paints, personal care products, cleaners and other high end applications – jet fuel, bio based plastics and synthetic rubber, fibres etc.
Butanol is seen as a potential alternative to ethanol as it has 30 percent more energy per gallon than ethanol. The current global demand for butanol is exceeding 1.2 billion gallons per year and it has been valued over $6 billion annually. This high-value market will expand significantly as bio-butanol will make pathways to other chemical derivatives. In other industrial chemical markets it has a global presence of over $5 billion.
Indian Import of Butanol
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The global bio-butanol market is expected to reach USD 17.78 billion by 2022.
Bio-butanol demand in acetates exceeded 780 kilo tons in 2014. Growing demand from the textile industry is expected to stimulate growth over the next seven years. They are increasingly being used in detergents, cleaners and polishes which has augmented growth.
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