As has been reported previously in our news, Danish fledgling firm SCF Technologies has developed a process technology, called Catliq, to produce oil from organic waste, using high pressure, temperature and humidity conditions reminiscent of the those by which the earth's own oil reserves were formed - except that SCF's technology shortens the time period from a few million years to a few minutes.
Now Swedish energy giant Vattenfall has become interested in SCF Technologies' process, and together with Aalborg University is partnering with the company in a two year project to design a demonstration plant capable of making bio-oil from waste materials, reports professional journal Ingeniøren (The Engineer). The demonstration plant is likely to be annexed to Vattenfall's Nordjyllandsværket power station in Aalborg.
A Vattenfall spokesman told Ingeniøren: "Vattenfall is on the lookout for other fuels that can make our combined heat and power plants more environmentally friendly, and we are interested in SCF's technology because it is an effective process which is suitable for bio-materials with a high water content such as agricultural slurry and sludge from water purification plants."
According to Ingeniøren, Vattenfall is already talking to local farmers in northern Jutland to gauge their interest in supplying slurry to the planned demonstration plant.
Professor Lasse Rosendahl at Aalborg University's Institute for Energy Technology has worked for several years with SCF Technologies on modelling and optimising its process. "The energy yield is significantly higher in the Catliq process," Prof. Rosendahl comments. "We have just completed modelling the very complex process, and we reckon that it is possible to extract 75-80% of the energy in the dry material."
The oil that the Catliq process currently produces is too thick to be used as an ordinary diesel engine fuel without some refining, but according to Lasse Rosendahl it should be directly useable in a power station.