Waste-to-energy plant in Queensland
Waste-to-energy company Anergy has announced the completion of its high-temperature pyrolysis (HTP) plant at Yarwun, near Gladstone, Queensland.
Carried out in collaboration with Southern Oil Refining (SOR), the project is situated at their Northern Oil Refinery (NOR) and was part funded by the Queensland state government. Anergy’s HTP plant is an integral part of SOR’s AU$16m Advanced Biofuels Pilot Plant program, hailed as a “game changer” for the renewable energy market in Australia using home-grown technology. The plant processes waste biomass and hydrocarbon material as feedstock and to produce bio crude oil, which is then refined and converted at NOR into renewable fuel products.
SOR predicts that its facility at Yarwun will produce one million litres of renewably derived fuel within three years, for use in field trials with the Australian Defence Force, heavy road transport operators, the aviation sector and the US Navy’s Great Green Fleet initiative.
Anergy Process Engineer David Forster commented, “Our equipment and design allows for high-temperature operations with first-in-class thermal efficiency. Our tightly integrated design is scalable across 30 to 3000 kg/h, yet in many cases occupies the space of just a few shipping containers. Although a pilot, the plant at NOR is of commercial scale and far from the ‘lab-bench’ technology usually seen in this industry. This project is the first of its kind to use this technology, across this variety of feedstocks and at this scale.”
The HTP plant heats feedstock — either solid or liquid material — to temperatures as high as 900°C in an oxygen-free environment, where the material undergoes pyrolysis. The feed material separates into a solid biochar product and a gas stream called syngas. At NOR, the syngas is subsequently processed in a multistage condensing system to recover pyrolysis oil from the syngas, to then be re-refined into renewable fuel at NOR. The plant itself is compact — comprising a 40′ feeding container, two multilevel skids and product conveyors — minimising space while optimising accessibility and operability.
Ben Tabulo from Southern Oil said: “At Southern Oil, we aim to drive innovation in the sustainable fuel space, and our partnership with Anergy achieves exactly that. We are excited about the prospect of working with such an innovative technology, and we value the fact that they are a domestic Australian company. I am confident that the relationship will prove fruitful in both business and scientific innovation, leading to a better future for all.”
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