Biofuel production: Developing processes for second generation biofuel feedstocks

Producers partner to develop processes for manufacturing fuels from non-food sources, including perennial grasses, animal waste, and agricultural residues.

11/04/2008


Manufacturing biofuels without consuming food products has proven to be a valuable but elusive goal. Siemens has teamed with the USDA to create processes to help make these dreams reality.

Siemens Energy & Automation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have entered into a cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) that will improve the processes used to convert second generation, non-food-based, biofuel feedstocks, including perennial grasses, animal wastes and agricultural residues such as corn stover, into liquid bio-fuel intermediates, such as bio-oil.

As part of the CRADA, Logical Innovations of Richmond, VA, will work with researchers at USDA/ARS’s Eastern Regional Research Center (ERRC) in Wyndmoor, Pa., to improve on pyrolysis oil production via innovative control technologies. They will install a DCS (distributed control system) based on Siemens Simatic PCS 7 Box technology on ERRC’s bench scale, fluidized bed pyrolysis system. The process heats biomass in a reactor and converts it to liquid bio-oil, bio-char, and synthetic gas. The project will be commissioned in late 2008.

“We think distributed control will help accelerate second generation biofuel and biochemical developments by improving the repeatability, consistency and efficiency of our research processes,” says USDA/ARS research leader, Dr. Kevin Hicks.

According to Dave Hankins, vice president of Siemens chemical and pharmaceutical center of competence, the PCS 7 Box technology provides a new level of flexibility to biofuels producers, as well as improving worker safety and equipment protection.

“Siemens is proud to partner with the USDA in this important, environmentally friendly, pilot program,” says Hankins. “New feedstocks that can be quickly and easily processed will benefit the nation and the biochemicals and biofuels industries.”

—Edited by Peter Welander, process industries editor, PWelander@cfemedia.com ,
Process & Advanced Control Monthly
Register here and scroll down to select your choice of free eNewsletters .





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2013 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Leaders Under 40 program features outstanding young people who are making a difference in manufacturing. View the 2013 Leaders here.
The new control room: It's got all the bells and whistles - and alarms, too; Remote maintenance; Specifying VFDs
2014 forecast issue: To serve and to manufacture - Veterans will bring skill and discipline to the plant floor if we can find a way to get them there.
2013 Top Plant: Lincoln Electric Company, Cleveland, Ohio
Case Study Database

Case Study Database

Get more exposure for your case study by uploading it to the Plant Engineering case study database, where end-users can identify relevant solutions and explore what the experts are doing to effectively implement a variety of technology and productivity related projects.

These case studies provide examples of how knowledgeable solution providers have used technology, processes and people to create effective and successful implementations in real-world situations. Case studies can be completed by filling out a simple online form where you can outline the project title, abstract, and full story in 1500 words or less; upload photos, videos and a logo.

Click here to visit the Case Study Database and upload your case study.

Bring focus to PLC programming: 5 things to avoid in putting your system together; Managing the DCS upgrade; PLM upgrade: a step-by-step approach
Balancing the bagging triangle; PID tuning improves process efficiency; Standardizing control room HMIs
Commissioning electrical systems in mission critical facilities; Anticipating the Smart Grid; Mitigating arc flash hazards in medium-voltage switchgear; Comparing generator sizing software

Annual Salary Survey

Participate in the 2013 Salary Survey

In a year when manufacturing continued to lead the economic rebound, it makes sense that plant manager bonuses rebounded. Plant Engineering’s annual Salary Survey shows both wages and bonuses rose in 2012 after a retreat the year before.

Average salary across all job titles for plant floor management rose 3.5% to $95,446, and bonus compensation jumped to $15,162, a 4.2% increase from the 2010 level and double the 2011 total, which showed a sharp drop in bonus.

2012 Salary Survey Analysis

2012 Salary Survey Results

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.