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Diversified Energy shows off greasy fuel

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Eating bread and dripping really has gone out of fashion of late. It’s a fact that brings a nostalgic tear to the eye of Greenbang Senior and probably generates a bit of high fiving over at Diversified Energy.

For Diversified Energy have been showing off some new biofuel-making tech this month, using a process called Centia. With Centia, you can take some oils derived from agriculture crops, algae, animal fats, waste greases – dripping, if you like – and whip up a batch of delicious “bio-gasoline fuel very similar to traditional unleaded gasoline”.

Mmmm. Here’s some more details:

Fuels produced from Centia could be operated in engines, stored, and distributed in an identical manner to fossil fuels today. The process was developed in 2006 by North Carolina State University (NCSU) and has been licensed exclusively by Diversified Energy.

The tests were conducted at NCSU using demonstration reactors, operated under temperature and pressure with a proprietary catalyst developed specifically for the Centia bio-gasoline process. Starting with an input mimicking what would have originated as soybean oil, the process generated a fuel closely resembling the carbon number profile and molecular composition of unleaded gasoline. A mass conversion efficiency in excess of 90% was achieved.

Further development, optimization, and testing activities are being planned, including an end-to-end Centia system demonstration to make bio-gasoline, Jet A-1/JP-8 (jet fuel), and renewable diesel.

Dr. Henry Lamb, NCSU Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and lead investigator on the bio-gasoline work, remarked, “The team is extremely encouraged with the bio-gasoline results generated to date. With over 243 million vehicles on U.S. roads (with a majority using gasoline), finding an affordable renewable drop-in replacement would be a major achievement. While additional development work is still required, these results emphasize the potential of Centia to produce a variety of 2nd-generation biofuels.”

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