A number of economical by-products are obtained through InRim’s Continuous Pyrolysis Technology — a process that is typically carried out at temperatures of 500 – 700ºC. The products obtained include low levels of char (approximately 10% of feed volume), high-quality synthetic diesel, and cleaner burning syngas, along with significant levels of usable heat energy.
Crucial parameters for continuous pyrolysis include thermal decomposition temperature, heating rate, and residence time. Heating rates of the system can be varied depending on the waste stream. For example, if the rate is increased, biochar content is decreased. Likewise, Syngas, with temperatures between 500 – 700ºC, mainly comprises CO and CO2, but at higher temperatures, low concentrations of hydrocarbons are present. With an increased heating rate, other gases such as CH4 and C2H6 are also formed.
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Syn-oil is a high density, non-viscous fluid, having several different chemicals with a wide-ranging molecular weight distribution. After the final refining process, it can be used as a standard diesel replacement for energy generation or for general transport use. Uniquely, this technology creates approximately 10,000 litres of green diesel, to EN590 standards, every day through a single hybrid line — from just 20 tons of feedstock per day.
Syngas, or synthesis gas, is the name given to volatile gas that is created in the pyrolysis chamber and is a mixture that contains varying amounts of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. As syngas is combustible, it can be used for running power generation turbines. It can also supply all the plant’s power or be used in the diesel refining process.
Electricity generated from an all-electricity plant, from 20 tons of waste per day, will supply up to 3.6MW of green renewable energy directly to the local electricity grid. Using the latest advances in power generation technology, both hybrid plants and all-electricity plants utilise waste-heat and pyrolysis gases to power a generator. As a result, we can maximise resources to create an excellent return on waste-to-power ratio.
A pyrolysis plant creates a small amount of biochar — a significant co-product of the pyrolysis process which has properties similar to coke. At 23 – 32 GJ per ton, pyrolysis biochar has a higher heating value than many grades of coal and is a CO2 neutral green fuel.
Biochar can be used as a substitute for other industrial fuels to produce the heat required for drying feedstock, and also to supply heat to the pyrolysis reactor. Alternatively, it can be fed into the boiler in pelletised form to generate further energy for electricity production.
Perhaps the most notable and significant use of biochar is that it can be added to agricultural soils for enhanced crop yields. The initiative has gained significant positive attention since it’s commencement. This addition also has the potential to gain carbon credits from active carbon sequestration. Biochar can aid in:
- Nutrient retention and capture exchange capacity.
- Efficient nutrient use.
- Decreased soil acidity.
- Decreased uptake of soil toxins.
- Decreased release of non-CO2 greenhouse gases.
- Improved soil structure.
- Increased water-holding capacity.