ZeroPoint brings second biomass gasification project online

By Erin Voegele | August 14, 2012

ZeroPoint Clean Tech Inc. recently announced that the biomass gasification plant it developed in Newry, Ireland, is now operational. The installation is the second commercial-scale biomass gasification plant that the company has brought online. The new facility was successfully connected to the grid, and is now producing heat and power.

John Gaus, chairman and CEO of ZeroPoint, said that the Ireland facility is taking in woody biomass as feedstock. Due to confidentiality agreements established with the facility’s owner, ZeroPoint is not able to disclose specific plant information, such as heat and power output, he continued.

According to Gaus, ZeroPoint’s technology is a downdraft gasification process. While downdraft gasification generally creates a much cleaner gas than updraft gasification, downdraft gasification has traditionally been less stable. However, Gaus noted that his company has been able to overcome problems associated with instability.

“Over the last five years we’ve invested heavily in research and development to stabilize large-scale downdraft gasifiers,” he said, noting that the systems produce high-quality, clean gas over consecutive runs. Gaus specified that his company was able to achieve increased stability through a proprietary set of gasifier internals.

“We are very excited to be working on a second successful deployment of an advanced biomass-to-energy solution,” Gaus said. “We believe that we are currently producing the most stable, steady state and clean gas chemistry from biomass gasification in the world. We fully expect this second project to achieve operational robustness, reliability and commercial profitability.”

According to information released by ZeroPoint, the company is currently working with a number of strategic partners to assemble and deploy a basket of similar projects in North America and Europe. Gaus noted that his company has eight to 10 backlogged projects that are currently in the works.

ZeroPoint is also working to commercialize a patent-pending process to upgrade low-grade materials, such as sewage sludge and digestate from anaerobic digestion systems, into material more suitable for gasification and combustion. In addition, the company is working to convert syngas into renewable hydrocarbons.