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March 1, 2010
The ethanol yield from biomass has been increased by about 50% over conventional yields in a process developed by ZeaChem Inc. (Lakewood, Colo.; www.zeachem.com). ZeaChem has tested the process (diagram) in a 3,500-gal fermenter and will activate a demonstration plant to process tree residues in Boardman, Ore., in late 2010. The plant will produce 250,000-gal/yr of either ethanol or ethyl acetate, says Jim...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Ethanol-and-other-chemicals-from-biomass_5484.html
March 1, 2010
Coating technology that essentially eliminates carbon buildup on the interior of steam cracker tubes will be commercialized by Quantiam Technologies Inc. (Edmonton, Alta; www.quantiam.com). Commercial-scale tests in five ethylene crackers indicate that the coating can extend the time between furnace decokings to 1–2 yr for light feedstocks, whereas uncoated tubes have to be decoked about every 30...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Furnace-tube-coatings-reduce-carbon-formation-and-increase-efficiency-in-olefins-plants_5485.html
March 1, 2010
Last month at the National Ethanol Conference at Orlando, Fla., Novozymes’ A/S (Bagsvaerd, Denmark; www.novozymes.com) president and CEO, Steen Riisgaard, launched Cellic CTec2, a new enzyme product enabling the biofuel industry to produce cellulosic ethanol at a price below $2/gal — comparable to the current cost of gasoline and conventional ethanol in the U.S. Cellec CTec2 has a higher...
http://www.che.com/chementator/The-cost-of-producing-bioethanol-takes-a-nosedive_5486.html
March 1, 2010
    A new Kraft pulp Weyerhaeuser Co. (Federal Way, Wash.; www.weyerhaeuser.com) says it has begun commercial production of a new grade of Kraft pulp for the cellulose derivatives market. Cellulose derivatives are used in various products, including lacquers, paints, inks and thickening agents. The new pulp, called Pearl429, “is essentially a new class of softwood Kraft pulp,” says...
http://www.che.com/chementator/March-Chementator-briefs_5487.html
February 1, 2010
A demonstration plant that will produce transportation fuels from cellulosic biomass will be built at Tesoro Corp.’s petroleum refinery in Kapolei, Hawaii, by Envergent Technologies (Des Plaines, Ill.; www.envergenttech.com), a joint venture of Honeywell’s UOP (Des Plaines; www.uop.com) and Ensyn Technologies Inc. (Ottawa, Ont.; www.ensyn.com). Scheduled to start up in 2014, the plant will...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Tryout-set-for-biomass-to-gasoline-process_5432.html
February 1, 2010
What is said to be the first grassroots lignite-fueled power plant to use powdered activated carbon (PAC) for mercury capture has been started up near Franklin, Tex., by Luminant (Dallas, Tex.). In its initial operation the 800-MWe supercritical plant has achieved better than 90% Hg removal, says James Brown, director of engineering for Fluor Corp. (Irving, Tex.; www.fluor.com), which built the plant. This...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Lignite-fired-power-plant-uses-activated-carbon-to-capture-mercury_5433.html
February 1, 2010
This summer, Celitement GmbH (Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany; www.celitement.de) will begin construction on a pilot plant to produce a new cement known as Celitement. Located at the north campus of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT; www.kit.edu), the facility will produce up to 100 kg/d of Celitement when it starts operating in 2011, using a process first developed at KIT. In the first step...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Scaleup-slated-for-a-greener-cement_5434.html
February 1, 2010
A recently commercialized method for growing single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNs) in large quantities enables their use in a downstream process for depositing semiconducting inks onto flexible surfaces. Southwest NanoTechnologies Inc. (Norman, Okla.; www.swentnano.com) has developed a scalable technique (CoMoCAT process) in which carbon monoxide is decomposed into carbon and CO2 at 700–950ºC...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Printed-electronics-made-possible-by-this-carbon-nanotube-production-process_5435.html
February 1, 2010
Professor Shigeru Yamago and colleagues at the Institute for Chemical Research, Kyoto University (Japan; www.scl.kyoto-u.ac.jp/~yasuyuki/) have synthesized [8]cycloparaphenylene for the first time. The 11-nm-dia. molecule consists of eight benzene molecules linked together in a closed chain. The compound has a strong absorption peak at 340...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Making-a-ring-of-eight-benzenes_5436.html
February 1, 2010
A patented (WO 2008/053174), fluidic-oscillator-driven device that generates microbubbles has been shown by researchers from the University of Sheffield (U.K.; www.shef.ac.uk/cpe), in collaboration with the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (Prague; www.cas.cz/en), to improve the performance of air-lift loop bioreactors (ALBs). Up to 18% less energy is consumed for microbubble generation compared...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Microbubble-generator-enhances-performance-of-airlift-bioreactor_5437.html
February 1, 2010
In Malaysia, about 2-million metric tons (m.t.) of rice husk are produced each year, and the rice husk is either burned or disposed of as waste. Now this waste may find application as a non-leachable building material thanks to a vitrification process developed by researchers from the University Putra Malaysia (Serdang; www.eng.upm.edu.my). Several methods have been applied in various countries to achieve...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Vitrification-makes-a-product-from-rice-husk-waste_5438.html
February 1, 2010
Results of 12-mo immersion tests in biodiesel and bioethanol of a range of elastomer polymers typically used in fuel-handling equipment show that the seals are prone to significant swelling, which leads to failure in valves and other equipment, according to Precision Polymer Engineering Ltd., (PPE; Blackburn, U.K.; www.prepol.com). The swelling is caused by increased acidity of the biodiesel due...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Seal-selection-for-handling-and-storage-of-biofuels_5439.html
February 1, 2010
A newly marketed portable reactor system for generating hydrogen is capable of generating 1,000 L of the gas in 20 min. The volume is sufficient to fill a 5-ft-dia. weather balloon, which is the first market targeted by the system’s manufacturer AlumiFuel Power Inc. (Philadelphia, Pa.; www.alumifuelpowerinc.com). The company began...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Hydrogen-from-a-can_5440.html
February 1, 2010
Researchers from the Center for Membrane Technology, Beijing University of Technology (China; www.bjut.edu.cn) have developed a new spiral-wound membrane module for use in oxygen-enriched combustion. A pilot-scale system with five membrane modules has been built and tested in a 4-ton, oil-fired boiler. According to the Center’s director, professor Shulan Ji, the fuel required to generate one 1 GJ...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Oxygen-separation-membranes-made-in-China_5441.html
February 1, 2010
  Water reclamation Last month, a new water-reclamation process for the oil-and-gas industry was launched by HBC Systems, a newly created joint venture between Hydration Technology Innovations (HTI; Scottsdate, Ariz.; www.htiwater.com) and Bear Creek Services, LLC (Albany, Ore.; www.bearcreekservices.com). The so-called Bear Creek Green Machine incorporates HTIs proprietary forward-osmosis-membrane...
http://www.che.com/chementator/February-Chementator-briefs_5442.html
January 1, 2010
Alcoa of Australia (www.alcoa.com.au) has developed a process to recover sensible and latent heat from the fluegas (FG) produced by Bayer alumina calciners, and use the heat to evaporate Bayer spent liquor. Peter Hay, of Alcoa’s Technology Delivery Group, at Alcoa’s Kwinana Refinery, in Western Australia, says the recovered heat can also be applied to seawater desalination. Calcination consumes...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Recovering-energy-from-fluegas_5383.html
January 1, 2010
Koch Membrane Systems Inc. (KMS; Wilmington, Mass.; www.kochmembrane.com) recently unveiled large-diameter reverse osmosis (RO) elements and pressure vessels for seawater desalination that offer cost savings and reduced footprints. The new RO element and pressure vessel combinations have an 18-in. dia. and a 60-in. length, rather than the standard 8-in.-dia., 40-in.-long size that has been commonly used. The...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Large-diameter-reverse-osmosis-product-lowers-cost-and-reduces-footprint_5384.html
January 1, 2010
An advanced heat recovery system (AHRS) that boosts the fuel-to-steam efficiency of firetube boilers by as much as 15% will be produced by Cannon Boiler Works Inc. (New Kensington, Pa.; www.cannonboilerworks.com) through a license agreement with the Gas Technology Institute (GTI, Des Plaines, Ill.; www.gastechnology.org). Cannon expects to have its first commercial units available late this year, for...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Super-Boiler-achieves-higher-efficiency-through-the-recovery-of-waste-heat_5385.html
January 1, 2010
A new process for producing the oxidizing agent potassium ferrate (VI) (K2FeO4) can routinely generate multi-kilogram quantities per day, say scientists. Ferratec (St. Louis, Mo.; www.theincubationfactory.com) and partner Electrosynthesis (Lancaster, N.Y.; www.electrosynthesis.com) have licensed the process technology from Battelle (Columbus, Ohio; www.battelle.org) and are looking toward commercial-scale...
http://www.che.com/chementator/A-new-electrochemical-process-for-making-K2FeO4_5386.html
January 1, 2010
A two-year collaboration between Ashland Hercules Water Technologies (AHWT; Wilmington, Del.), a commercial unit of Ashland Inc. (Covington, Ky.; www.ashland.com), and BASF Nederland B.V. (Nijehaske, the Netherlands) has demonstrated that a combination of ultrasonic microbial control and corrosion inhibitors not only enhances environmental performance, but also leads to a dramatic reduction in total...
http://www.che.com/chementator/Sound-water-treatment-delivers-environmental-and-economic-benefits_5387.html
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