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Biomass can change the world
Greenwood Commonwealth ^ | 3/6/06 | Wyatt Emmerich

Posted on 03/06/2006 6:42:02 PM PST by grandpa jones

JACKSON - Hitler had one big problem in his plan to conquer the world: Germany had no oil or gas. The invasion of Russia was supposed to fix that problem, but that came to a bitter end.

Germany's brilliant engineers came up with a solution. It was called Fischer-Tropsch, a complex chemical process that extracts fuel from tar, coal and lignite. These bulky raw materials were broken down into simple hydrogen and carbon molecules, then reconstituted into liquid fuel. After the failed Russian invasion, Germany embarked on a massive campaign to build the new plants.... After the war, the discovery of cheap oil and gas relegated Fischer-Tropsch to a minor role in chemical engineering until, 50 years later, we started to run low on fossil fuels. Last week, I flew up to Aberdeen, Miss. Van Tine picked me up at the airport and within minutes we were at Stan Pearson's dream come true. With run-of-the-mill refining equipment, they have built a pilot plant that is turning "wood waste" into car fuel at a cost of 85 cents per gallon. With a full-scale plant, Van Tine is confident they could produce 214 gallons of fuel per ton of biomass. If they do, they would quadruple ethanol yields from existing methods and prove biomass could indeed fill America's gas tanks.

(Excerpt) Read more at zwire.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: Mississippi
KEYWORDS: biomass; energy; energyindependence; ethanol; oilticks
They grind it into a powder then blast it with 2000-degree steam. The "syngas" then flows through a top-secret "catalyst" containing iron, cobalt and potassium. A series of instantaneous chemical reactions occur and out comes car fuel.

The whole process takes a few seconds. The carbon conversion rate is 99 percent. The hydrogen comes from water and the biomass itself. The carbon comes courtesy of the sun and photosynthesis. The energy to superheat the "food stock" comes from the plant itself, which must cannibalize 18 percent of its energy to keep itself running.

Pearson Technologies has applied for a process patent on their catalyst. It's their "black box," no bigger than a refrigerator. There are only two other competing biomass Fischer-Tropsch catalysts in the world.

"I get calls all day long from all over the world," Van Tine said.

Van Tine believes he can build a plant capable of producing 100 million gallons of ethanol a year. If so, 10 plants in Mississippi could provide enough fuel to keep every car running in the state. He cringes to think of all the wood waste from Katrina that could have been converted into fuel.

Environmentalists love this stuff. Fossil fuels come from underground, but all of the ethanol carbon comes from the atmosphere. The process doesn't put any new carbon dioxide in the air. It just recycles what's already in the atmosphere.

1 posted on 03/06/2006 6:42:05 PM PST by grandpa jones
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To: grandpa jones
I hope these guys are a bit more picky about their feedstock than the folks up in Missouri who were (and may still be, idk) using turkey ofal.

Peeeeyew!

2 posted on 03/06/2006 6:45:43 PM PST by stboz
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To: grandpa jones

the future is now .

Heat your house for one fourth the cost of fuel.

http://www.americanenergysystems.com/index.cfm


3 posted on 03/06/2006 6:47:13 PM PST by spanalot
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To: grandpa jones
Environmentalists love this stuff.

Environmentalists hate anything that keeps us on the road. Meanwhile, they'll jet around to various global warming conferences, and use lots of limo service once they arrive.

4 posted on 03/06/2006 6:49:06 PM PST by Spirochete
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To: spanalot

I've been heating my whole house (and hot water) on wood pellets for 10 years now.
Nothing new here...


5 posted on 03/06/2006 6:49:58 PM PST by xcamel (Press to Test, Release to Detonate)
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To: grandpa jones

"Environmentalists love this stuff. Fossil fuels come from underground, but all of the ethanol carbon comes from the atmosphere. The process doesn't put any new carbon dioxide in the air. It just recycles what's already in the atmosphere."

Not just environmentalists.


6 posted on 03/06/2006 6:51:25 PM PST by sagar
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To: grandpa jones

bookmk ping


7 posted on 03/06/2006 6:53:47 PM PST by Dad yer funny
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To: grandpa jones
Yeah, this is new technology just waitin' to be developed into a coommercial process

EXCEPT Hitler's War Machine ran on coal gasification over 60 years ago and those plans now sit in an archive at Texas A&M at College Station. A Gasification plant was built in 1981 in Beulah North Dakota using these plans.

How does that song go? "Everything Old is New Again!"

Gas Pains?

8 posted on 03/06/2006 6:57:05 PM PST by Young Werther
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To: grandpa jones
Pearson Technologies has applied for a process patent on their catalyst.

Do you know which country the patent application was made in?

U.S. Applications Here <- clickit

9 posted on 03/06/2006 6:58:42 PM PST by Cboldt
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To: grandpa jones

1400 Lbs. of Ethanol (214 Gallons) from 2000 Lbs of wood is a very impressive conversion rate. There would have to be no water in the wood to make this even remotely possible. I would have to see a lot more information before I would believe this.


10 posted on 03/06/2006 6:59:04 PM PST by norwaypinesavage
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To: grandpa jones
This is not new there a cheaper and easier ways to make hydrogen, methane gas and host of other fuels. We had vehicles in WWII that would run on gas, diesel, alcohol, hydrogen methane turpins etc. all in a single vehicle.

We have had the technology to be energy independent for over 50 years. The only reason it is not mainstream is they have not figured out a way to keep the masses from realizing they could make it cheaper at home then having to buy it from a filling station so they can keep their market share.
11 posted on 03/06/2006 7:11:03 PM PST by hawkiye
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To: grandpa jones

Anybody remember the film "The Formula"? This topic comes and goes about once a decade.


12 posted on 03/06/2006 7:23:37 PM PST by KellyAdmirer
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To: grandpa jones
50 years later, we started to run low on fossil fuels

When the article includes falsehoods, it makes the real stuff look doubtful. The world's reserves have more than doubled since 1980. That is after meeting a continually rising demand.

Oil Proved Reserves, All Countries, 1980-2006

13 posted on 03/06/2006 7:24:31 PM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: stboz
They plan to sell the three million gallons for $1.85 a gallon - a profit of one dollar per gallon. Achieving that, the plant would pay for itself in 14 months.

Can I invest in the plan?

14 posted on 03/06/2006 7:47:25 PM PST by soccer_maniac (Do some good while browsing FR --> Join our Folding@Home Team# 36120: keyword: folding@home)
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To: thackney

Well the price still goes up, so that don't help much.

My friend mentioned that someone he knew that was in WWII:

They captured a staff car that ran on this stuff and it ran great, but they gave it to their commander and who knows where it went!


15 posted on 03/06/2006 7:49:08 PM PST by thebaron512
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To: grandpa jones

The key is finding a large source of biomass that could power this nation for generations to come.

Hmmm...

Anyone know if Michael Moore would be willing to sacrifice himself for the greater good?


16 posted on 03/06/2006 7:57:25 PM PST by Our man in washington
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To: thackney
Raw statistics tell us very little. Note Canada's huge jump in "proven" reserves. That's due primarily to the tar sands. With conventional oil you get 25-30 times the energy out that you put into extraction. With tar sands you get 1.5%.

Oh, and those Saudi "proven" (but only estimated, as the chart says) reserves, those were doubled several years back, as were most other OPEC producers "reserves", without drilling a single exploratory hole. Their annual production quotas were tied to their reserves, so they simply upped their "reserves." See Matthew Simmons' book, Twilight in the Desert for all the details.

17 posted on 03/06/2006 8:47:43 PM PST by phelanw
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To: grandpa jones
It just recycles what's already in the atmosphere.

How does it extract the CO2 from the atmosphere? I thought it was taking CO2 from biomass.

18 posted on 03/06/2006 9:15:41 PM PST by TheMightyQuinn
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To: TheMightyQuinn

the plants use the co2 to make wood, the reactor uses the wood to make fuel, the engine uses the fuel and produces co2


19 posted on 03/06/2006 9:43:19 PM PST by King Prout (many accuse me of being overly literal... this would not be a problem if many were not under-precise)
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To: AntiGuv; RightWhale

ping


20 posted on 03/06/2006 9:45:23 PM PST by King Prout (many accuse me of being overly literal... this would not be a problem if many were not under-precise)
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To: King Prout
Germany embarked on a massive campaign to build the new plants

the plants use the co2 to make wood

really? They build plants to make wood?

21 posted on 03/06/2006 9:52:07 PM PST by TheMightyQuinn
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To: TheMightyQuinn
How does it extract the CO2 from the atmosphere? I thought it was taking CO2 from biomass.

The biomass takes it from the atmosphere before it becomes biomass.

22 posted on 03/06/2006 9:53:15 PM PST by Mind-numbed Robot (Not all that needs to be done, needs to be done by the government.)
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To: thackney

When the article includes falsehoods, it makes the real stuff look doubtful. The world's reserves have more than doubled since 1980. That is after meeting a continually rising demand.



Remember Paul Erlich???


23 posted on 03/06/2006 9:55:46 PM PST by danamco
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To: TheMightyQuinn

who's on first?


24 posted on 03/06/2006 9:55:46 PM PST by King Prout (many accuse me of being overly literal... this would not be a problem if many were not under-precise)
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To: soccer_maniac
Can I invest in the plan?

Any major oil company would suffice, except Exxon. Exxon seems to want to confine their oil production to oil wells for the time being, but they too could invest in this kind of production at any time without warning.

25 posted on 03/07/2006 9:37:22 AM PST by RightWhale (pas de lieu, Rhone que nous)
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