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Imtex Membranes confirms new funding

Published by , Senior Editor
Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Imtex Membranes Corp. has reached its target funding goal of US$20 million with over US$10 million from SABIC Ventures US Holdings LLC and Valent Low-Carbon Technologies, over US$6 million from Sustainable Development Technologies Canada (SDTC) and US$3 million from Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA).

Imtex’s PermyleneTM membrane technology reduces energy and emissions intensity of light olefins, the main building blocks for resins and rubber chemicals. In the production process these olefins, namely ethylene, propylene and butene, must be separated from paraffins, being ethane, propane and butane. Traditional incumbent processes are energy-intensive, generating annual CO2e emissions equivalent to 40 million passenger vehicles.

“With over 10 000 hours of pilot operations demonstrating stable, on-spec results, Imtex has proven it can consistently achieve polymer-grade purification of olefins in a cost-effective, low- energy product offering. We now have the funding required to move forward on all fronts,” said Karlis Vasarais, CEO, Imtex Membranes.

SABIC Ventures’ parent company is a global leader in diversified chemicals with US$40 billion in revenues and operations around the world.

“In a short period, Imtex has shown significant progress on the SABIC project. We are excited about our investment to support an accelerated scale-up and roll-out of their technology,” said Aruna Subramanian, Managing Director, SABIC Ventures.

The focus of the investment is to build out two commercial facilities in Alberta and Ontario processing C3 refinery grade propylene and C4 raffinate. In addition, funding proceeds will be used for several other global behind-the-fence projects (C2 and C4 olefin streams) in the US, Saudi Arabia, and South-East Asia.

“Over 40% of energy in petrochemicals is associated with chemical separations. SDTC is proud that our early and ongoing support of Imtex is helping lead to a significant funding milestone and further progress toward commercialisation,” said Leah Lawrence, President & CEO, SDTC.

“ERA is pleased to work with investment partners, such as SDTC, and entrepreneurs like Imtex, to leverage funds that accelerate new technologies to reduce emissions from petrochemical production. This unified approach demonstrates Alberta's and Canada's global leadership potential in low-carbon, hydrocarbon production," said Steve MacDonald, CEO, Emissions Reduction Alberta.

Since inception, Imtex has received funding in excess of US$22 million, led by Monteco Ltd. The research that materialised into Imtex’s pilot facilities was supported by a series of Ontario and Canada Federal government investments. Most recently, Imtex has received funding from the Province of Ontario, through the OCE Voucher for Innovation and Productivity, GreenCentre Canada’s CONNECT Program supported by NRC-IRAP, and BioIndustrial Innovation Canada’s Ontario Bioindustrial Innovation Network (OBIN) which supports cluster development in Sarnia- Lambton and Eastern Ontario.

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