Wednesday, October 28, 2009

BINGO! High Quality Fuels from Waste Biomass

A wide range of biomass waste can be thrown into Dynamotive Energy Systems' BINGO process to produce uniform high quality hydrocarbons. The unique process involves two steps: pyrolysis plus hydroreformation.
BINGO (Biomass INto GasOil) is a two-stage process first involving pyrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass to produce a primary liquid fuel, BioOil, which is then hydroreformed to a Stage 1 gas-oil equivalent liquid fuel that can either be directly utilized in blends with hydrocarbon fuels for industrial stationary power and heating applications or be further upgraded to transportation grade liquid hydrocarbon fuels (gasoline/diesel) in a Stage 2 hydrotreating process.

The products from Stage 1 of the BINGO upgrading process (Upgraded BioOil A, UBA) were similar in density, oxygen content, TAN (total acid number), molecular weight distribution, among other physico-chemical properties, to those produced from hardwoods.

Analysis of second stage upgraded BioOil samples (Upgraded BioOil B, UBB) from hardwoods previously provided to three independent refiners in Europe and in the Far East established the potential for development of synthetic hydrocarbon fuels showing gasoline, jet, gasoil and vacuum gasoil fractions.

...Dynamotive Energy Systems Corporation announced that analysis completed independently by two refiners have corroborated initial results published earlier. The distillation of the samples provided showed presence of gasoline, jet, gasoil and vacuum gasoil fractions.

Demonstrating a significant upgrading of the crude BioOil to the UBB, Analysis further confirmed that the most highly refined oil, UBB, has oxygen content of less than 0.1% and it reached a level of conventional oil products. Dynamotive is continuing its research and development efforts in BioOil upgrading and has completed basic design on the development of a second pilot plant to further advance the process. _GCC
If you have not been paying attention, you would have missed several recent advances in the thermochemical production of fuels from biomass.

Cellulosic ethanol and algal fuels may be getting most of the attention, but thermochemical BTL is only a few breakthroughs away from incrementally displacing petroleum from several niches.

Gasification and pyrolysis plus other thermochemical and catalytic processes, are likely to achieve high yield biomass to liquid fuels sooner than the algal and fermentation processes.

In the long term, I suspect that the energy-from-microbe approach using sunlight as the energy source, will prove the most efficient and sustainable. But in the meantime, the thermochemical route is going to put a ceiling on petroleum prices far too quickly to suit the doomseekers of peak oil.



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