Chemical Looping gAsification foR sustainAble production of biofuels (CLARA))

Biomass gasification is one of the most promising routes of biofuels production, which is a key element in reducing GHG emissions of the transport sector. Various process options have been investigated, implemented in different scales and proven to be functional. However, these processes lack economic and technological competitiveness in the current market environment. This issue is addressed by Chemical Looping Gasification (CLG) in this project. The innovative CLG process uses an oxygen carrier that is cycled between a fuel and an air reactor to provide oxygen for partial conversion of the biomass feedstock. One of the benefits of CLG is that high quality syngas with low nitrogen content can be produced without an air separation unit. Avoiding air separation has high potential to improve the overall conversion efficiency and the economic feasibility of biomass gasification. The aim of this project is to further develop CLG, which has by now only been investigated in lab-scale up to 25 kWth feedstock input, using a broad range of pilot plants up to a size of 1 MWth. Furthermore, concepts for pre-treatment of biogenic residues are developed to enable their use for CLG, and an innovative syngas cleaning concept is established for reduction of capital costs. The full process chain including biomass pre-treatment, gasification, syngas treatment, Fischer-Tropsch (FT) synthesis, and FT-wax hydrocracking is demonstrated for production of next generation sustainable liquid biofuels. The process is scaled up to industrial size using adequate models that have been validated at pilot scale. The risks of the technology are assessed considering economic, health, safety and social issues and possibilities for risk mitigation are suggested. A techno-economic assessment of the biomass-to-end–use chain is performed. Environmental impact is examined by life cycle analysis. The results are disseminated by a broad range of measures and exploitation plans are established.

Partner organizations

  • AICHERNIG Engineering GmbH (Private, Austria)
  • RWE Power (Private, Germany)
  • National Renewable Energy Centre of Spain (CENER) (Public, Spain)
  • University of L'Aquila (Academic, Italy)
  • Forschungszentrum Jülich (Private, Germany)
  • Vienna University of Technology (Academic, Austria)
  • Technische Universität Darmstadt (Academic, Germany)
  • Centre for Research and Technology Hellas (CERTH) (Public, Greece)
  • AB Torkapparater (Private, Sweden)
  • Ulster University (Academic, United Kingdom)
  • Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) (Public, Spain)
  • Unipetrol Centre for Research and Education, a.s. (Research Institute, Czech Republic)
Start date 01/11/2018
End date 31/10/2022

Page manager Published: Thu 10 Jun 2021.