New Danish Super-Critical Bio-Oil Process
CatLiq is especially well-suited for treating organic waste with high water content such as sewage slurry, waste from food production and waste products from the production of bioethanol, according to SCF Technologies.
Vattenfall and Aalborg University are partnering with Danish startup SCF Technologies in a two-year project to design a demonstration plant based on SCF’s CatLiq process—an application of the firm’s supercritical fluid technology in the catalytic production of bio-oil from organic waste.
CatLiq converts biomass and organic wastes in water at near or supercritical conditions (280-350 °C and 180-250 bar). Under these conditions water is very reactive, and converts, in the presence of homogeneous (KOH) and heterogeneous (ZrO2) catalysts, the organic fraction of the feed into smaller and more saturated molecules in the form of a bio-oil product, a water-soluble organics product and a high calorific value gas product. In addition to the bio-oil/methane products, the process can be tuned to produce hydrogen and water soluble fuels such as methanol, ethanol or acetaldehyde.
The high reactivity of water results in high conversion rates of organic matter and a high throughput. In 2008, SCF ran a series of tests of CatLiq using aqueous feed streams at the pilot plant in Herlev, Denmark. Test results showed CatLiq converted 70-90% of the energy in the feedstream into energy in the bio-oil product. It was based on those results that SCF began discussions with Danish and international companies on further commercialization of CatLiq. _GCC