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Waste2Tricity advances EfW deployment projects that use the proven plasma gasification process to generate syngas (synthesis or energy gas) to power efficient and proven internal combustion engines (ICE) or gas turbines (GT) to generate electrical power.

Process diagram

Waste2Tricity's research shows this to be the most efficient, proven combination of conversion technologies currently available (a position supported by DECC in the recent Renewables Obligation Banding Review consultation - October 2011) and therefore both the most environmentally positive and commercial model.

Waste enters the plasma gasifier and is turned into syngas by the very high temperature in a controlled oxygen environment. The plasma gasification process has many advantages over incineration, fewer potentially pollutant gases and no tar, ash or fly ash are produced. The main by-product, vitrified slag, is inert and can be used as aggregate.

The syngas then passes through a cleaning and drying process before being fed into an internal combustion engine (ICE) powered generator or a gas turbine, with an average generation efficiency of about 35% for ICEs.

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Process diagram

Waste2Tricity advances EfW projects that use proven plasma gasification processes to make clean syngas able to power efficient and proven internal combustion engine (ICE) or gas turbine (GT) generators.

Generating a clean syngas affords significant future-proofing opportunities, as hydrogen can be separated more easily. The ability to generate hydrogen future proofs projects in three key ways:

  1. Fuel Cell Ready - hydrogen powers new generation alkaline fuel cells. Fuel cells can be integrated (replacing ICEs/Gas Turbines) once commercially available to significantly increase electrical power output (by up to a theoretical 70%).

    Waste2Tricity working with AFC Energy's fuel cell system as having the greatest potential to be the most efficient, low cost technology for generating electrical power from gasified waste. For more information on the W2T/AFC tie up click here
  2. Carbon Capture Ready - integrating AFC Energy's fuel cell system means hydrogen and carbon dioxide (CO2) will be separated once the syngas has been cleaned and processed. W2T fuel cell enabled facilities will, therefore, capture carbon without significant additional investment.
  3. Hydrogen Economy Ready - hydrogen is notoriously difficult and expensive to transport and dedicated hydrogen fuelling stations are not currently commercially viable. The amount of hydrogen used by a W2T/AFC fuel cell enabled facility to generate electrical power could be varied. Decreasing the amount of hydrogen used results in a drop in electrical energy output but the residual hydrogen can be drawn off and stored. In this way a W2T/AFC fuel cell facility could provide a local source of hydrogen for vehicle re-fuelling whilst continuing to generate electrical power for the grid, helping the growth of the hydrogen economy.

Waste enters the plasma gasification chamber and is turned into syngas by the very high temperatures and starved oxygen environment. The plasma gasification process has advantages over incineration - fewer potentially polluting gases and no tar, ash and fly ash are produced; and when combined with fuel cells the plasma gasification process will have no emissions to atmosphere. The main by-product, vitrified slag, is inert and can be used as aggregate.

The syngas will be cleaned and converted to hydrogen, this will feed new generation AFC Energy alkaline fuel cells. By combining plasma gasification with AFC fuel cells, the net output of electricity to the National Grid could increase by up to 70% compared to existing technologies.

Please see technology FAQ's for more »