|The CHOREN gasification process. Click to enlarge.|
CHOREN Industries, a provider of solid feed gasification technology used in the production of BTL (Biomass-to-Liquids), among other applications, and Norske Skog, one of the world’s largest producers of newsprint and magazine paper, have entered into an agreement for collaboration in the evaluation of BTL fuels production in Norway.
CHOREN earlier this year finalized construction of a beta commercial BTL plant in Germany, which will produce about 18 million of liters (4.8 million gallons US) of BTL fuels yearly.
|Mass and energy balance of the CHOREN beta plant. Click to enlarge.|
CHOREN’s Carbo-V Process is a three-stage gasification process involving three sub-processes: low temperature gasification; high temperature gasification; and endothermic entrained bed gasification. (Earlier post.)
During the first stage of the process, the biomass (with a water content of 15 – 20 %) is continually carbonized through partial oxidation (low temperature pyrolysis) with air or oxygen at temperatures between 400 and 500°C,—it is broken down into a gas containing tar (volatile parts) and solid carbon (char).
During the second stage of the process, the pyrolysis gas containing tar is post-oxidized hypostoichiometrically using air and/or oxygen in a combustion chamber operating above the melting point of the fuel’s ash to turn it into a hot gasification medium.
During the third stage of the process, the char is ground down into pulverized fuel and is blown into the hot gasification medium. The pulverized fuel and the gasification medium react endothermically in the gasification reactor and are converted into a raw synthesis gas. Once this has been treated in the appropriate manner, it can be used as a combustible gas for generating electricity, steam and heat or as a synthesis gas for producing synthetic fuels.
Norske Skog has the competence and systems required to handle large amounts of woody biomass for industrial production. The company has identified the production of second-generation biofuel based on woody biomass as a potential new business area and recently formed a joint venture—Xynergo— to evaluate and potentially establish one to two full-scale plants for the production of BTL in Norway.
Xynergo AS is jointly owned by Norske Skogindustrier AS, Viken Skog BA, Allskog BA, Mjøsen BA and Statskog SF. Norske Skog owns 71% of the shares in Xynergo. Xynergo AS is located in close proximity to Norske Skog Follum in Hønefoss, in an existing environment suitable for further technical and industrial development.
Xynergo’s goal is to build a prototype BTL plant in Follum, Norway that will be in operation by 2010 and to have a full-scale plant in operation by 2015.
Between them, CHOREN and Norske Skog have competence over the entire value chain from forestry feedstock input to synthetic biofuel output.
CHOREN is developing plans for a final investment decision to be taken in 2009 on the world’s first full-scale plant for production of BTL in Schwedt, Germany, with a targeted production of 270 million liters (71.3 million gallons US) of synthetic fuel annually.
A similar plant in Norway would be able to cover about 14% of the total Norwegian diesel consumption for road transportation. This would reduce Norwegian CO2 emissions by up to 700,000 tonnes per year, corresponding to 7% of the current total CO2 emissions from road traffic in Norway.
Second-generation BTL fuels can reduce the total life-cycle CO2 emissions by up to 90% compared to fossil diesel.