Carbon Trust launches Pyrolysis Challenge

THE Carbon Trust is calling for expressions of interest from potential partners within the scientific community to collaborate in the development of a world-class commercially viable pyrolysis oil upgrading process.

The organisation says it could potentially commit £5million over the next three to five years to one or more commercially orientated research projects in advanced biofuels. As part of its mission to accelerate the move to a low-carbon economy, the Carbon Trust has identified pyrolysis oil from sustainable sources of biomass as having the potential to produce low-cost fuels with low system greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions – if it can be integrated into a conventional refinery.

Through applied research and development, the expected outcomes of the so-called Pyrolysis Challenge include:

However, the trust admits that the properties of the oil produced from current fast pyrolysis processes are far from suitable for direct integration. The objective is to produce oil with the properties required for integration either by modifying the pyrolysis process to produce better quality oil directly, or upgrading the oil before or at the refinery.

The trust is seeking a potentially wide range of partners to work with and who are willing to cough up matching support in order to deliver a breakthrough in this area. Partners may include refinery technology developers, catalyst developers and research organisations involved in the study of pyrolysis processes, bioenergy and relevant related disciplines.