Adapting gasification technologies to improve valorisation

The main objectives of AMBITION’s gasification work are to:

  • Adapt existing gasification technologies to add value to biorefinery residues, in particular lignin-rich fractions from 2G bioethanol production.
  • Develop pathways for improved high-added-value carbon utilization from the biomass with particular focus on obtaining proper H2/CO ratios for downstream syngas processing

The performance of different gasification technologies and connected technology for gas cleaning and conditioning will be compared on an equal basis based on detailed measurements that allow deriving accurate mass and energy balances. The results of AMBITION’s work on gasification are needed to support the project’s work on Synthesis Gas Fermentation.

Individual R&D institutes, generally in close collaboration with industry, focus on the development of different specific gasification and connected gas cleaning and conditioning technologies. However these are often based on different boundary conditions set by national policies and funding schemes.

Therefore comparing these technologies is difficult and learning from each other’s R&D efforts is often biased by country-specific assumptions. AMBITION has designed a work package to overcome these limitations, and allow a fair comparison of three different gasification technologies and integration options.

The three gasification and gas cleaning/conditioning technology concepts will be adapted to operate on biorefinery residue feedstock and assessed and compared experimentally on an equal basis. The gasifiers will apply the same residue feedstock, while in a range of gasification and gas cleaning/conditioning tests, each gasifier operator will determine optimum process conditions to maximize carbon conversion and optimize syngas quality. The optimization of the syngas quality will be aimed at meeting the specifications of downstream syngas fermentation. The three gasification technologies considered are:

  • Updraft gasification (ENEA)
  • Bubbling-fluidised-bed (BFB) gasification (LNEG)
  • MILENA indirect gasification (ECN)

For these specific gasification and gas cleaning/conditioning concepts, the potential of energy system integration options will be assessed, for example feed-in Hproduced from intermittent energy sources.

Two or three representative feedstocks (lignin-rich biorefinery residue streams) will be supplied to all three partners. The gasifier test runs will be accompanied by extensive measurement campaigns to determine syngas quality and derive accurate mass and energy balances to allow for a fair comparison.

ECN and LNEG will couple a syngas cleaning and conditioning train to their gasifier, combining the cleaning and conditioning technologies and concepts developed at their sites. The gas cleaning and conditioning will be aimed at meeting the requirements for syngas fermentation.

The final goal is to have an optimized technology for the conversion of lignin-rich biorefinery residue streams and further upgrading to bio-fuels, including opportunities for energy system integration, and to lift national R&D efforts to a higher level by the sharing of learning from all partners.