Tuesday, July 22, 2014
It would be an oversight to leave Sun Drop Fuels out of my recent string of articles on advanced biofuels developers. Based in Colorado, Sun Drop is trying to perfect a proprietary process to turn biomass of one sort or another into a drop-in fuel using ultra-high temperatures and intense pressure. It is a gas reforming process that should sound very familiar after the last few posts on Renmatix, Primus Green Energy and Licella. Carbon from the gasification of the biomass is mixed with a bit of hydrogen from natural gas is expected to yield a neat fuel ready to ‘drop in’ to existing gasoline infrastructure.
Friday, July 18, 2014
In the post “Licella’s Pot is Boiling” on July 11, 2014, I described the progress Licella has made in developing its ‘supercritical water’ process to produce biochemicals and fuel from waste biomass. Licella is not the only company that has been working on supercritical hydrolysis technologies. Privately-held Renmatix based in Pennsylvania is also using high heat to break down cellulosic materials into sugar - the five-carbon sugar called xylose and six-carbon sugar called glucose to be exact.
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
“Incremental commercialization” are the words Primus Green Energy uses to describe its use of natural gas as a feed stock for transportation fuel. The company promises to convert to biomass such as wood pellets or Miscanthus as soon as its gasification technology is perfected. I realize it is popular to characterize natural gas as a green energy source, but I am reluctant to take that leap. Natural gas is after all a fossil fuel derived from the same dead plant matter that is providing us with coal and crude oil.
Friday, July 11, 2014
Earlier this month Australia’s Licella Pty. Ltd. received good news from a feasibility project (Advanced Biofuels Investment Readiness or ABIR) to prove the commercial viability of producing bio-chemicals and bio-crude oil. They were successful in demonstrating that their bio-crude can be blended and will qualify as a drop-in fuel at conventional refineries. These are only interim findings, but it now appears more likely than not that Licella will succeed with development of a highly marketable bio-chemicals and biofuel.