Norwegian company to convert woody biomass into transportation fuels

SynSel Energi AS, a member of SynSel Energy Inc. (SynSel), has entered into an IH2 process demonstration license agreement with CRI/Criterion Catalyst Company, a member of the CRI Catalyst group (CRI), a global group of catalyst technology companies.

IH2 technology is a continuous catalytic thermo-chemical process which converts a broad range of forestry/agricultural residues and municipal wastes directly into renewable hydrocarbon transportation fuels and/or blend stocks.

The Basic Engineering Package for the 5 tonne per day demonstration plant located in Grenland, Norway is to be completed over a period of several months by Zeton of Ontario, Canada. Zeton is the preferred engineering services provider for IH2 facilities at demonstration scale.

The IH2 demonstration plant will be integrated into an existing third party petrochemical manufacturing site, allowing for optimised capital and operating expense. Zeton's engineering and fabrication experience with IH2 technology at the bench and pilot scale will assist in de-risking subsequent commercial scale designs.

SynSel recognises the potential of the IH2 technology to monetise residual biomass and cost-effectively deliver renewable hydrocarbon fuels and/or blend stocks at prices competitive with fossil fuels currently. The company intends to extend its collaboration with CRI and its partners to implement the IH2 technology on a commercial scale in Norway initially. Innovation Norway has provided initial funding support for the demonstration plant as an integral pathway to several commercial IH2 plants in Norway.

The design feedstock for the facility will be forest residues including slash, sawdust, bark and woodchips with the ability to process select agricultural and municipal residues as well. IH2 hydrocarbons produced from these feedstocks span the petrol, jet and diesel range. The hydrocarbons currently meet the ASTM specifications for their respective road transport fuels, positioned for the US market as an E10 petrol fully renewable product or as a 100% fully renewable on-road diesel. Ongoing research indicates a high probability to achieve EN specification fuels or high-quality blend stocks. Jet-range hydrocarbon blend stocks are also produced.

The IH2 process was developed by Gas Technology Institute (GTI) of Des Plaines, Illinois—a research, development, and training organisation serving energy markets. GTI experts invented, tested, and patented IH2 technology and are providing ongoing commercialisation support. Twelve US and seven international patents have been issued on the technology. CRI Catalyst has been granted exclusive worldwide licensing rights.