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LIQUID BIO-FUEL PRODUCTION FROM NON-FOOD BIOMASS VIA HIGH TEMPERATURE STEAM ELECTROLYSIS

Description: Bio-Syntrolysis is a hybrid energy process that enables production of synthetic liquid fuels that are compatible with the existing conventional liquid transportation fuels infrastructure. Using biomass as a renewable carbon source, and supplemental hydrogen from high-temperature steam electrolysis (HTSE), bio-syntrolysis has the potential to provide a significant alternative petroleum source that could reduce US dependence on imported oil. Combining hydrogen from HTSE with CO from an oxygen-blown biomass gasifier yields syngas to be used as a feedstock for synthesis of liquid transportation fuels via a Fischer-Tropsch process. Conversion of syngas to liquid hydrocarbon fuels, using a biomass-based carbon source, expands the application of renewable energy beyond the grid to include transportation fuels. It can also contribute to grid stability associated with non-dispatchable power generation. The use of supplemental hydrogen from HTSE enables greater than 90% utilization of the biomass carbon content which is about 2.5 times higher than carbon utilization associated with traditional cellulosic ethanol production. If the electrical power source needed for HTSE is based on nuclear or renewable energy, the process is carbon neutral. INL has demonstrated improved biomass processing prior to gasification. Recyclable biomass in the form of crop residue or energy crops would serve as the feedstock for this process. A process model of syngas production using high temperature electrolysis and biomass gasification is presented. Process heat from the biomass gasifier is used to heat steam for the hydrogen production via the high temperature steam electrolysis process. Oxygen produced form the electrolysis process is used to control the oxidation rate in the oxygen-blown biomass gasifier. Based on the gasifier temperature, 94% to 95% of the carbon in the biomass becomes carbon monoxide in the syngas (carbon monoxide and hydrogen). Assuming the thermal efficiency of the power cycle for electricity generation is 50%, (as expected from GEN ...
Date: November 1, 2011
Creator: Hawkes, G. L.; O'Brien, J. E. & McKellar, M. G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department