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Biology and fuel science

Fuel Processing Technology, 43 (1995) 177-181 Elsevier Science B.V.. Amsterdam. news In the past several years, there has been considerable effort to process fuels by biological methods. The basis for such work is usually because biological processes operate at relatively low temperatures and pressures and presumably low cost. Much work has been devoted particularly to desulfurization of coal, and indeed organisms have been found that destroy many of the stable sulfur components in coal such as pyrite or thiophenic compounds. However, to date no economically competitive process for coal desulfurization has been commercialized. Now a 5 b/d pilot plant is in operation in St. Louis by Energy BioSystems Corp (EBC) for desulfurizing high sulfur diesel oil. This unit is designed to demonstrate the continuous biocatalytic desulfurization and to supply data to allow scale up of the BDS process for commercialization. Ultimately they hope to demonstrate the biodesulfurization of crude oil and other petroleum fractions. The pilot plant was built by M.W. Kellog and is in use by EBS and Petrolite Corp at Petrolite’ res notes search and development center. EBS expects the process to provide refiners a desulfurization process which is lower in capital and operating costs. (See Oil and Gas Journal, March 20, 1995, p. 42) The day of renewable liquid fuels has not yet arrived, however. The International Energy Agency has issued a new report on fuels from agricuhural products. Such fuels should be less polluting and should curb greenhouse gas emissions. The new IEA report “Biofuels” however compares costs, energy usage and greenhouse gas emission levels of several biofuels with gasoline and diesel fuel. Their conclusions: biofuels are viable substitutes for petroleum products and can reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but at higher costs. Biofuel production costs are calculated to be three or more times current petroleum-based fuel prices. (See Hydrocarbon Processing, Feb. 1995, p. 11) ?? Ammonia from Coal The effect of economics on the course of development of processes for synthetic Views and opinions expressed in this section do not necessarily reflect those of the Publisher or Editors. No responsibility is assumed by the Publisher for any injury and/or damage to persons or property as a matter of products liability, negligence or otherwise, or from any use or operation of any methods, products, instructions or ideas contained in the material herein. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Fuel Processing Technology Elsevier

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