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EERC to develop biofuel for US Military

The Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) will develop alternative liquid fuels, including biofuel, for US military applications under a US$906,000 contract from the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology Inc (CCAT).

By Kari Williamson

The EERC will demonstrate gasification-based technologies for converting non-petroleum feedstocks, such as coal and biomass, into liquid fuels including biofuel. The testing supports CCAT’s work for the US Defense Logistics Agency (US DLA).

The US Military has committed to increase energy security through the utilisation of domestic resources with life cycle CO2 emissions equal to or less than their petroleum-derived counterparts.

The EERC is supporting the CCAT team by using the EERC’s transport reactor development unit (TRDU) and bench-scale entrained-flow gasifier (EFG) systems to evaluate the impact of fuel quality and operating conditions on synthetic gas composition, gas clean-up, system performance, overall process efficiency, and CO2 emissions.

“Dozens of fuels have been tested in these gasification systems over the past two decades,” says Mike Holmes, Deputy Associate Director for Research at the EERC.

“For example, since its commissioning in 1990, our TRDU gasifier has proven to be an excellent system for evaluating the operational performance of all ranks of coal, coal–biomass blends, and 100% biomass. The seven-story-high TRDU system enables the gasification reactions to be self-sustaining, but it is still small enough that several different operating conditions can be evaluated in a single day.”

The project will be completed by the end of September.

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