FORSYTH TOWNSHIP, Mich. — A biomass processing plant at the site of the former K.I. Sawyer Air Force Base in the central Upper Peninsula is getting a $9.5 million investment to pay for a major expansion.

The Mining Journal of Marquette ( ) says the funding comes from the business development company MVC Capital Inc. and goes to Minneapolis-based Biogenic Reagents, owner of the Michigan Renewable Carbon facility.

The site is in Marquette County's Forsyth Township. Sawyer air base closed 18 years ago.

The company makes activated carbon for use in air, food and water purification. Biogenic Reagents chief executive Jim Mennell says the expansion lets his company focus on additional applications.

The company now has 21 employees at its Sawyer facility, and Mennell says it aims to have 45 employees by early 2015.