Envergent Technologies designing RTP plant to convert palm biomass to renewable fuels in Malaysia

Premium Renewable Energy (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. has selected Envergent Technologies LLC, a Honeywell company, to perform the engineering design for a project that will use Envergent’s RTP Rapid Thermal Processing technology (earlier post) to convert palm biomass to renewable heat and electricity.

RTP is a rapid thermal process in which biomass is rapidly heated at ambient pressure to generate high yields of a pourable, liquid pyrolysis oil, which can then be burned for energy in industrial burners and furnaces or converted to green electricity.

The initial Premium RTP facility, to be initiated in late 2011 and completed in early 2013, will be Malaysia’s first plant to use RTP for the production of a clean-burning liquid biofuel derived from biomass. The RTP liquid fuels will be used to generate renewable electricity and heat.

Premium expects that the first facility will be followed by additional RTP units to be built by 2020.

The project is part of the Malaysian government’s Economic Transformation Program for the palm oil sector in order to create a high-income economy by 2020 while growing in a sustainable manner. The project is projected to create 1,000 new jobs and generate $1 billion in revenue annually by 2020.

Envergent will perform a site assessment and identify strategies for integration for the facility into the existing palm oil industry in Malaysia. It will also provide equipment scoping, engineering design, a constructability analysis and a plant construction schedule for the RTP unit in support of Premium’s plan.

Envergent Technologies is a joint venture of Honeywell’s UOP and Ensyn Corp. RTP is currently in use in seven commercial biomass processing plants in the US and Canada. In addition to the use of biomass for renewable power and heat, Envergent Technologies is also focused on development and commercialization of technology to upgrade the biofuel produced into green transportation fuels. A demonstration unit of this technology is currently in engineering design in Kapolei, Hawaii under a grant from the United States Department of Energy.

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