Archives :: Processing & Handling :: Thermal & Energy Management :: Fuels

Displaying 21 - 40 of 143 stories.
June 1, 2009
The world’s first commercial plant to produce liquid fuels by direct coal liquefaction is now being started up in Majata, Inner Mongolia, by Shenhua Group (Beijing). Designed to produce 25,000 bbl/d of syncrude from 4,300 metric tons per day (m.t./d) of coal, the plant was operated for a 300-h trial at the beginning of this year, then was shut down for modifications. If the current startup goes well...
June 1, 2009
Algae offer a ubiquitous, renewable source of oil for fuels and various chemical products ( CE, September 2008, pp. 22–25), but the extraction of oil from the algae cells is an energy-intensive process that involves dewatering and drying the biomass, followed by solvent extraction. Now, a one-step method that breaks the algae cells and liberates the oil without the need for dewatering or solvents has...
June 1, 2009
The world’s first demonstration plant combining underground coal gasification and gas-to-liquids (GTL) technologies in the same facility was officially opened on April 22 in Chinchilla, 350 km northwest of Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. The plant is operated by Linc Energy Ltd (Brisbane;, which was formed to research, develop and commercialize the underground...
May 1, 2009
Petroleum refiners throughout the world are faced with increasing uncertainty regarding future refining margins, crude prices and project costs. These factors, along with falling demand for refined products, a global recession, and tighter credit markets, are forcing global refiners to reconsider, postpone, or cancel expansion projects. At the same time, mandated reduction of sulfur levels in refined...
May 1, 2009
Strategies for extracting more distillate from petroleum to meet the growing demand for diesel fuel constituted a major theme of the recent annual meeting of the National Petrochemical and Petroleum Refiners Association (NPRA, Washington D.C.; in San Antonio, Tex. Worldwide, the demand for distillate is expected to increase by more than 5 million bbl/d over the next 10 years, says Richard...
May 1, 2009
Researchers at United Environment & Energy (UE&E; Horseheads, N.Y.) have developed a catalyst for the efficient conversion of algae to biodiesel. The mixed-metal oxide catalyst (comprised of metals that are resistant to corrosion yet reactive) facilitates the transesterification of algae oil and methanol. The mechanism for the reaction over the solid...
March 1, 2009
A process that produces hydrogen from coal with close to 80% energy conversion efficiency, plus coproduction of a carbon-dioxide-rich stream for sequestration, is being developed at Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio; This compares with around 60% conversion efficiency for traditional coal gasification processes, says Fanxing Li, a research associate and co-inventor of the process along...
March 1, 2009
Last month, GE Oil & Gas (Florence, Italy; received a contract to supply Eni S.p.A. (Rome; with the largest refinery reactors of their type ever to be manufactured. GE Oil & Gas’ components-production facility in Massa, Italy, will manufacture the heavy-wall, slurry reactors — each weighing about 2,000 tons — and then transport them to Eni’s...
February 12, 2009
The Megawatter platform is a commercial implementation of Microbial Fuel Cells (MFC) technology for direct electricity or hydrogen generation on a large scale, while using wastewater as fuel by treating the organic materials...
February 1, 2009
In these hard economic times, people working in troubled businesses may well envy the situation of Alberta’s oil sands industry. The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP, Calgary, Alberta; predicts that the production of synthetic crude from oil sands will reach 3.3-million bbl/d by 2020, up from 1.2-million bbl/d in 2007. Much of this oil will be sent to the U.S. via an...
February 1, 2009
A continuous process for producing biodiesel that has a residence time of about one minute, versus several hours for a conventional batch process, has been developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL; Oak Ridge, Tenn.; The process uses a centrifuge for simultaneous synthesis of biodiesel and separation of the biodiesel from the glycerol byproduct. ORNL has done laboratory tests and is...
February 1, 2009
Lurgi GmbH (Frankfurt, Germany; is building a pilot plant to demonstrate the viability of its three-stage bioliq process for producing liquid fuels from biomass. The pilot plant — an entrained-flow gasifier for the production of synthesis gas — will be located at the Karlsruhe Research Center (FZK; Germany;, and is part of a joint project with the Karlsruhe Institute of...
January 23, 2009
Praxair, Inc. (Danbury, Conn.; has been awarded a hydrogen supply contract from Dynamic Fuels, LLC, a joint venture between Tyson Foods, Inc. and Syntroleum Corp. Dynamic Fuels will use H2 supplied by Praxair to produce renewable fuels from non-food-grade animal fats produced or procured by Tyson Foods...
January 1, 2009
As an energy resource, global coal reserves represent 2,000 billion barrels of oil equivalent. In 2007, global oil reserves were about 1,300 billion barrels of oil. World wide, oil demand will grow 40 to 50% by 2030. But coal offers an opportunity to diversify worldwide liquid-fuel supplies and coal utilization to produce fuels that can extend the lifetime of world oil reserves. This is a strategic...
January 1, 2009
Coal is typically cleaned by gravity separation to reduce ash and pyrite content, with flotation used to recover fines. Various methods have been applied to disperse fine clay particles from the surface of coal particles and thus improve coal flotation performance. A team of researchers from the Ian Wark Research Institute, University of South Australia (Adelaide;, has studied the effect...
January 1, 2009
A new method for vaporizing liquefied natural gas (LNG) that is more environmentally friendly than the traditional submerged combustion vaporization (SCV) process is being offered by Black & Veatch (B&V; Overland Park, Kan.; In an SCV process, LNG is passed through stainless steel tubes in a water bath that is warmed by sparging combustion gases from a submerged, gas-fired burner. The...
October 28, 2008
UOP LLC (Des Plaines, Ill.;, a Honeywell company, announced that it was awarded a $1.5-million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop economically viable technology to stabilize pyrolysis oil from second-generation biomass feedstocks for use as a renewable fuel source. Biomass pyrolysis oil is made from second-generation feedstocks like the residuals from agricultural and...
October 15, 2008
UOP LLC (Des Plaines, Ill.; will form a joint venture (JV) with Ensyn Corp. (Wilmington, Del.; to offer technology for the production of fuel oil and transportation fuels from second-generation biomass, such as forest and agricultural residues. Ensyn long ago commercialized a fast pyrolysis process for converting cellulosic waste to bio-oil and operates several plants that...
October 15, 2008
As part of the European BioDME project, Haldor Topsøe A/S (Lyngby, Denmark; and Chemrec will design and build a new plant for producing dimethyl ether (DME). Located at the Smurfit Kappa...
September 15, 2008
Consol Energy Inc. (Pittsburgh, Penn.;, the nation’s largest producer of bituminous coal, and Synthesis Energy Systems Inc. (SES, Houston, Tex.; have formed a joint venture to build a coal-to-gasoline plant near Benwood, W.Va., close to Consol’s Shoemaker complex. Scheduled for startup in 2011, it will be the first U.S. plant to use SES’s U-Gas...
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