Johnson Matthey, NREL agree on 5-year, $7M effort on pyrolysis

December 17, 2012 |

In Colorado, Johnson Matthey and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory announced a five-year, $7 million effort to economically produce drop-in gasoline, diesel and jet fuel from non-food biomass feedstocks. The goal is to improve vapor phase upgrading during the biomass pyrolysis process in order to lower costs and speed production of lignocellulose-based fuels – a key technical milestone in producing hydrocarbon fuels from biomass for about $3 per gallon, which is a 2017 DOE goal. NREL will be conduct the testing, from bench scale to pilot scale. Johnson Matthey will supply and develop innovative new catalytic materials to upgrade pyrolysis vapor to biofuel components. The non-food derived feedstocks used to produce the biofuels will vary from fast-growing poplar or pine trees to switchgrass, forest and agriculture residue and municipal solid waste.

“Combining Johnson Matthey’s understanding of catalysis with NREL’s biomass processing capabilities,”Johnson Matthey’s Andrew Heavers, said.will help accelerate the development of more economic routes to biofuels.”

“It’s a way of leveraging the expertise of two organizations to solve a pressing national and international problem,” NREL Senior Project Leader for Partnership Development Rich Bolin added.

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