DOE awards $27.5M to 16 water infrastructure projects

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million to 16 water infrastructure projects. Modern technology has the potential to reduce energy use in aging water infrastructure, particularly in wastewater treatment, which demands up to 2% of domestic electricity use each year. These projects, operating in 13 states, have the potential to reduce carbon emissions and water-treatment costs while improving water quality and equity of distribution nationwide. Market Background Sustainability Water

Water 167

Scottish Enterprise project converting train to hydrogen power

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Scottish Enterprise, Transport Scotland and the Hydrogen Accelerator, based at the University of St Andrews, have appointed Arcola Energy and a consortium of industry leaders in hydrogen fuel cell integration, rail engineering and functional safety to deliver Scotland’s first hydrogen powered train.

2020 393
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Johnson Matthey launches HyCOgen; converting CO2 and green hydrogen into sustainable aviation fuel

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HyCOgen, Johnson Matthey’s Reverse Water Gas Shift technology, is a catalyzed process to convert green hydrogen and CO 2 into carbon monoxide (CO), which is combined with additional hydrogen to form synthesis gas (syngas), a crucial building block in the manufacture of fuels and chemicals. The global aviation industry is responsible for 12% of transport-related CO 2 emissions, therefore substantial production of low carbon intensity SAF is essential to mitigate emissions.

Lawrence Livermore publishes state-by-state energy/water Sankey diagrams

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For the first time, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) has published state-by-state energy and water Sankey diagrams in one location so that analysts and policymakers can find all the information they need in one place. These diagrams depict energy use and water flow during the year 2010, the latest year for which comprehensive data is available. General location of energy and water categories. Energy and water generally “flows” from left to right.

2018 204

Graforce plasma electrolysis for efficient generation of hydrogen from industrial waste water; partnering with Audi

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Berlin-based Graforce Hydro GmbH, the developer of a plasma electrolyzer—the Plasmalyzer —is applying its technology for the highly efficient generation of hydrogen from industrial waste water. The technology not only converts wastewater pollutants into valuable energy, but also reduces emissions (CO 2 , CO, HC) by 30 to 60 percent. The current Plasmalyzer offers highly efficient water splitting. Only purified water and oxygen remain as waste products.

2018 226

EU project HyFlexFuel converted sewage sludge and other biomasses into kerosene by hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL); SAF

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Thanks to the expertise of several project partners, HyFlexFuel proved that HTL biocrudes can be successfully upgraded to drop-in fuels in an industrially-relevant environment, achieving hundreds of hours of continuous operations.

Oxford team directly converts CO2 to jet fuel using iron-based catalysts

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Researchers at the University of Oxford have developed a method to convert CO 2 directly into aviation fuel using a novel, inexpensive iron-based catalyst. These are important raw materials for the petrochemical industry and are presently also only obtained from fossil crude oil.

2020 397

Multicomponent catalytic system efficiently converts carbon dioxide to methanol

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Inspired by naturally occurring processes, a team of Boston College chemists used a multi-catalyst system to convert carbon dioxide to methanol at the lowest temperatures reported with high activity and selectivity.

2020 292

DOE releases report on water-energy nexus

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The US Department of Energy (DOE) released a new report that frames an integrated challenge and opportunity space around the water-energy nexus for DOE and its partners and lays the foundation for future efforts. Present day water and energy systems are tightly intertwined. Water is used in all phases of energy production and electricity generation. Energy is required to extract, convey, and deliver water of appropriate quality for diverse human uses.

Water 205

New efficient, low-temperature catalyst for converting water and CO to hydrogen and CO2

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Scientists in the US and China have developed a new low-temperature catalyst for producing high-purity hydrogen gas while simultaneously using up carbon monoxide (CO) via the water-gas shift (WGS) reaction. In order to achieve high WGS activity at low temperature, we searched for catalysts that could dissociate water efficiently and reform the generated oxygen-containing species (reaction of surface oxygen or hydroxyl with CO*) at low temperature.

2017 174

New MOF material captures and converts NO2

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The NO 2 can then be easily converted into nitric acid, a multi-billion dollar industry with uses including agricultural fertilizer for crops; rocket propellant and nylon. Despite the highly reactive nature of the pollutant, MFM-520 proved capable of being fully regenerated multiple times by degassing or by treatment with water in air—a process that also converts the nitrogen dioxide into nitric acid.

2019 167

Alcoa outlines technology roadmap to decarbonize aluminum industry

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outlined a technology roadmap to support its vision to reinvent the aluminum industry for a sustainable future. Alcoa’s Refinery of the Future program will use a range of technologies and processes to design a refinery that lowers capital intensity, eliminates carbon emissions, and addresses other industry challenges, including reducing or eliminating bauxite residue. The technology also retains all the water from the original feedstock. Alcoa Corp.

thyssenkrupp’s water electrolysis technology qualified as primary control reserve in Germany; hydrogen production for the electricity market

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thyssenkrupp’s proprietary water electrolysis technology for the production of. conducted the necessary tests jointly in an existing water electrolysis plant operating as part of the Carbon2Chem project ( earlier post ) in Duisburg. Water electrolysis produces green hydrogen that can be stored for hours, days or months, converted back into electricity or used as a clean, CO 2 -free starting material in the mobility sector or for the production of sustainable chemicals.

2020 265

Port of Corpus Christi, Howard announce to convert Javelina refinery services facility to blue hydrogen production

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The Port of Corpus Christi Authority (Port of Corpus Christi) and Howard Midstream Energy Partners, LLC (Howard/HEP) have executed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) stating their intention to convert Howard’s Javelina refinery services facility into the region’s first blue hydrogen production facility. This hydrogen is currently sold back to refineries and other industries where it is used to remove impurities such as sulfur during the refining process.

Oleophobic hydrophobic magnetic sponge selectively soaks up oil, sparing water and wildlife

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A Northwestern Engineering-led team has developed a highly porous smart sponge that selectively soaks up oil in water. The research was published in the ACS journal Industrial Engineering and Chemical Research. Skimmers don’t work in rough waters or with thin layers of oil.

2020 217

NREL refines method to convert lignin to nylon precursor

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A new study from the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) demonstrates the conversion of lignin-derived compounds to adipic acid, an important industrial dicarboxylic acid produced for its use as a precursor to nylon, plasticizers, lubricants, polyesters, and other popular products and chemicals. Muconic acid can then be separated from the biological culture and catalytically converted into adipic acid.

2015 289

University of Utah engineers develop fast method to convert algae to biocrude

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bacteria, fungi, and algae) may be grown on non-arable land and with saline water, wastewater or/and produced water from mineral and petroleum extraction. Technological and economic barriers to industrial scale up remain, with microorganisms (e.g., Furthermore, CIJMs have been used in continuous processing of nanoprecipitation, nanomedicines, and nanoparticle production at industrially relevant scales and rates.

2019 228

Inorganic mercury converted to more toxic and bio-accumulative monomethylmercury in ocean waters, possibly by microbes

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A team led by the University of Alberta has confirmed that inorganic mercury (Hg) found worldwide in ocean water is transformed into monomethylmercury (MMHg)—a potent and bio-accumulative neurotoxin—in the seawater. After two years of testing water samples across the Arctic Ocean, the researchers found that inorganic mercury, released by human activities such as industry and coal burning, undergoes a process called methylation and becomes monomethylmercury.

Gevo awarded patent for process to upgrade or convert ethanol and bio-based alcohols to drop-in hydrocarbon fuels

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water, lower alcohols such as C 2 -C 8 alcohols) in the feed stream. The combination of using decarbonized, plant-based alcohols, with our proprietary innovations to processing techniques known in the chemical industry can be a very powerful approach to dial-in the desired renewable hydrocarbon fuel product mix.

SwRI, UTSA seek to combine reverse water-gas shift and Fischer Tropsch synthesis in single reactor to produce low-carbon hydrocarbon fuels

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We’re seeing a rise in battery-powered passenger vehicles, but the high power demands of the aviation, locomotive, shipping, and long-haul trucking industries will continue to require energy-dense hydrocarbons for the foreseeable future. The first will react hydrogen with CO 2 to make carbon monoxide (CO) and the second will convert the CO and hydrogen, a blend known as synthesis gas or syngas, into liquid hydrocarbon fuel by Fischer-Tropsch synthesis.

Carbon 167

Researchers devise photochemical process to convert bio-acetone to green jet fuel additive

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Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), with colleagues at Yale University, have developed a photochemical process to convert acetone derived from plants (bio-acetone) into a mixture of polycyclic alkanes, the high energy density of which is appropriate for high-perfomance aviation applications. We converted bio-derived acetone to isophorone and then used a UV lamp to convert it to a cyclobutane, a type of hydrocarbon with high energy density for fuels applications.

2020 174

ETH Zürich, Total team develops new catalyst to convert CO2 and H2 directly to methanol efficiently

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Scientists at ETH Zürich and oil and gas company Total have developed a new catalyst that efficiently converts CO 2 and hydrogen directly into methanol. The global economy still relies on the fossil carbon sources of petroleum, natural gas and coal, not just to produce fuel, but also as a raw material used by the chemical industry to manufacture plastics and countless other chemical compounds.

2019 174

Stanford team sets record for solar-to-hydrogen efficiency of solar water splitting: >30%

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Researchers at Stanford University have demonstrated solar water splitting by photovoltaic-electrolysis with a solar-to-hydrogen (STH) efficiency of more than 30%—a new record. Hydrogen generation via solar water splitting represents a promising solution to these challenges, as H 2 can be stored, transported and consumed without generating harmful byproducts. However, the thermodynamic minimum voltage required to electrolyse water is only 1.23 V

2016 237

BuG ReMeDEE project seeks to use extremophile bacteria to convert methane to biofuels, biopolymers and electricity

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Researchers from South Dakota School of Mines & Technology (SDSMT) are heading a project to to investigate methane cycling in deep and extreme environments and to develop new biological routes using previously unexplored and novel microorganisms from extreme environments for converting methane into value-added products such as liquid biofuels, biopolymers, and direct current electricity. The BuG ReMeDEE consortium includes industrial partners LanzaTech (US) and Bijson Innovations Pvt.

2018 163

Audi in new e-fuels project: synthetic diesel from water, air-captured CO2 and green electricity; “Blue Crude”

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Audi’s latest e-fuels project is participation in a a pilot plant project in Dresden that produces diesel fuel from water, CO 2 and green electricity. Audi is the exclusive partner in the automotive industry. The sunfire plant, which operates according to the “power-to-liquid” (PtL) principle, requires carbon dioxide, water and electricity as raw materials. Nearly 80% of that can be converted into synthetic diesel.

2014 315

MIT researchers develop oxygen permeable membrane that converts CO2 to CO

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MIT researchers have developed a new system that could potentially be used for converting power plant emissions of carbon dioxide into carbon monoxide, and thence into useful fuels for cars, trucks, and planes, as well as into chemical feedstocks for a wide variety of products. Syngas is a widely used industrial fuel and feedstock.

2017 174

EPFL team develops low-cost water splitting cell with solar-to-hydrogen efficiency of 12.3%

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A team led by Dr. Michael Grätzel at EPFL (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne) in Switzerland has developed a highly efficient and low-cost water-splitting cell combining an advanced perovskite tandem solar cell and a bi-functional Earth-abundant catalyst. The combination of the two delivers a water-splitting photocurrent density of around 10 milliamperes per square centimeter, corresponding to a solar-to-hydrogen efficiency of 12.3%.

2014 226

HyperSolar reaches 1.25 V for water-splitting with its self-contained low-cost photoelectrochemical nanosystem

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volts (V) of water-splitting voltage with its novel low-cost electrolysis technology. The theoretical minimum voltage needed to split water molecules into hydrogen and oxygen is 1.23 HyperSolar’s research is centered on developing a low-cost and submersible hydrogen production particle that can split water molecules using sunlight, emulating the core functions of photosynthesis. Nanosystem for water electrolysis. HyperSolar, Inc. announced that it had reached 1.25

2014 205

UCSD/Sapphire team shows marine algae can be engineered to perform as well as fresh water algae to produce enzymes and biofuels; removing the constraint of fresh water

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have demonstrated for the first time that genetically engineered marine algae can be just as capable as fresh water algae in producing industrially relevant products such as enzymes or biofuels. The scientists engineered marine algae to produce five different kinds of industrially important enzymes; they suggest the same process could be used to enhance the yield of petroleum-like compounds from these salt water algae.

2012 241

QUB team converts aluminum foil waste to highly active alumina; biofuel catalyst, other applications

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Researchers at Queen’s University Belfast have developed a novel green route to convert aluminium foil waste into highly active nano-mesoporous alumina (γ-Al 2 O 3 ) (designated as ACFL550). Alumina has direct application as a catalyst and catalyst support in the automotive and petroleum industries. These crystals were then dissolved in deionized water and filtered to remove any impurities.

2017 174

DOE awards up to $40M for open-water, grid-connected wave energy testing facility

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The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced the award of up to $40 million, subject to appropriations, to design, permit, and construct an open-water, grid-connected national wave energy testing facility. The pre-permitted site was designed to meet the DOE specifications as well as industry and community needs, letting researchers focus on the technological challenges inherent in testing—instead of permitting and regulatory matters.

2016 163

New composite reduces rare earth element usage in three-way catalytic converters

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The high-performance, three-way catalytic (TWC) converter is one of the workhorses of emissions reduction for gasoline engines. The TWC reduces NO x to nitrogen and oxygen; oxidizes CO to CO 2 , and oxidizes unburnt hydrocarbons to carbon CO 2 and water. A paper on their work is published in the ACS journal Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research.

2017 159

LanzaTech collaborating with Swayana to convert waste gases from ferroalloy production to ethanol

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In a 2007 paper presented at the XI International Conference on Innovations in the Ferro Alloy Industry (Infacon XI), a team from the US EPA, the Norwegian Pollution Control Authority (SFT), and SINTEF Materials and Chemistry (Lindstad et al. The energy produced is assumed to be used internally at the site and the carbon content of the CO subsequently converted to CO 2 in-plant. Any CO emitted to the atmosphere is assumed to be converted to CO 2 within days afterwards.

2017 150

MIT researchers advancing development of supercritical water upgrading of heavy crude; lower cost, energy use and CO2

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Findings by MIT researchers could help advance the commercialization of supercritical water technology for the desulfurization and upgrading of high-sulfur crude oil into high-value, cleaner fuels such as gasoline without using hydrogen—a major change in refining technology that would reduce costs, energy use, and CO 2 emissions. SCWU uses water rather than natural gas as the source of the hydrogen molecules needed for the key chemical reactions in the refining process.

2015 205

SOLAR-JET project demonstrates solar-driven thermochemical conversion of CO2 and water to jet fuel

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The EU-funded SOLAR-JET project has demonstrated the production of aviation kerosene from concentrated sunlight, CO 2 captured from air, and water. SOLAR-JET ( S olar chemical reactor demonstration and O ptimization for L ong-term A vailability of R enewable JET fuel) uses sunlight in a concentrated solar reactor to convert CO 2 and water to syngas (a mixture of hydrogen and CO), which is then processed in a Fischer-Tropsch reactor to aviation kerosene.

2014 220

Navy researchers convert 2,3-Butanediol to renewable gasoline, solvents, and fuel additives; dioxolanes

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The solubility of the dioxolane mixture in water was only 0.8 The dioxolane mixture has potential applications as a sustainable gasoline blending component, diesel oxygenate, and industrial solvent.

2016 150

Novozymes launches commercial enzyme technology to convert waste oils into biodiesel

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Novozymes has launched Eversa Transform, the first commercially available enzymatic solution (a liquid lipase) to convert both glycerides and free fatty acids (FFA) into biodiesel. Growing demand for vegetable oil in the food industry has resulted in increased prices, causing biodiesel producers to search for alternative—and more sustainable—feedstocks. equivalent MeOH, 35°C/95°F, 2% water and 20 to 24 hours reaction time.

2014 191

RWTH Aachen researchers report on two methods to convert CO2 to chemicals and fuels

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Formic acid is an important product in the chemical industry and has many applications, including agriculture, food technology, and the leather industry. Methanol and its products can not only be used as a fuel or for driving fuel cells, they are also a versatile feedstock for chemical industry. The conventional industrial process for the production of methanol starts with syngas, a mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide obtained from fossil resources.

2012 253

Researchers convert atmospheric CO2 to carbon nanofibers and nanotubes for use as anodes in Li-ion and Na-ion batteries

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STEP is an efficient solar chemical process, based on a synergy of solar thermal and endothermic electrolyses, designed to convert greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into a useful carbon commodity. Our climate change solution is two fold: To transform the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into valuable products and to provide greenhouse gas emission-free alternatives to today’s industrial and transportation fossil fuel processes.

2016 190

Battelle evaluating pilot-scale mobile catalytic pyrolysis unit to convert biomass to bio-oil

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Battelle researchers have developed a mobile catalytic pyrolysis unit that converts biomass materials such as wood chips or agricultural waste into bio-oil. As currently configured, the Battelle-funded unit converts one ton of pine chips, shavings and sawdust into as much as 1,300 gallons of wet bio-oil per day. This feature makes it ideal to access the woody biomass that is often left stranded in agricultural regions, far away from industrial facilities.

2013 191

Siluria Technologies announces successful start-up of first demo plant directly converting natural gas to ethylene through OCM

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Siluria’s OCM technology is the first commercially viable process to directly convert natural gas to ethylene, a key building block for the global petrochemicals industry and a new basis from which to produce transportation fuels. The oxidative coupling of methane (OCM) converts methane into ethane and ethylene (C 2 hydrocarbons). The ethane subsequently undergoes dehydrogenation to form ethylene and water.

2015 186

Renmatix and Virent collaborate on converting cellulosic sugars to renewable chemicals and packaging

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Renmatix and Virent announced a strategic collaboration to convert affordable cellulosic sugars to renewable chemicals and bio-based packaging materials. Integrating local feedstock processing with on-site commercial production will lower costs and increase the viability of using renewable chemicals in bio-based packaging and plastics for industrial and consumer goods.

2013 180

Report Finds Water Stress Rapidly Becoming Key Strategic Risk to Commerce; Impending Water/Energy Collision

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Water consumption or withdrawals per unit of energy produced, by energy type, in the United States. Among the increasing challenges is that while the sourcing, processing, and delivery of clean water is becoming more energy-intensive, the extraction and refining of fossil fuels and their substitutes is trending towards increasing water requirements per unit of fuel produced as energy companies work with progressively lower grade resources. Sectoral Water Risks.

2009 150