The Iowa Power Fund Board has approved awards of over $4.1 million for four renewable energy projects that will increase cellulosic ethanol production, produce electricity from poultry waste, verify prairie grasses’ biomass potential and expand the development of thin, flexible solar panel technology for buildings.

  1. Quad County Corn Processors received a $1.45 million grant to construct a full-scale plant at its Galva, IA, ethanol facility to demonstrate its patent-pending cellulosic ethanol process. The process could be applied at existing corn starch ethanol plants to increase ethanol production, create a high-value protein feed product and recover more corn oil than a conventional ethanol plant. With commercial-scale demonstration, the project has the potential of replication at Iowa's 35 dry-grind ethanol plants. Quad County Corn Processors will provide $5 million in funding for a total project cost of $6.5 million.
  2. PL Energy, LLC of Des Moines received $2 million to install a demonstration-scale on-farm poultry litter gasification system at Denyon Farms near Webster City. The system will use poultry litter waste to produce electricity, heat for the barns, biochar to use as a soil amendment and ammonia fertilizer. PL Energy will leverage $3 million in matching funds for a total project cost of $5 million.
  3. The University of Northern Iowa (UNI) received over $436,000 to verify research findings that mixtures of perennial prairie species produce significantly greater biomass for use in energy production while balancing the impact on the environment. UNI will provide over $438,000 in funding for a total project cost of over $874,000.
  4. Power Film, Inc., Ames, received $220,000 to develop manufacturing-automation and solar- panel test equipment to supply production quantities in their Building Integrated product line. Building Integrated Solar, or Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV), are thin-film solar panels that are integrated with building materials to offer an alternative power source direct from the structure. In addition, Power Film will install two solar array projects and produce marketing materials to demonstrate the product line to prospective customers and produce an informational kit for educational purposes. Power Film will match $228,000 in funding for a total project cost of $448,000.

The Power Fund has invested more than $69.4 million directly in 49 competitive projects, leveraging more than $587 million in energy research and development, early stage commercialization and education. To review a list of Power Fund approved projects, visit