Second generation biofuels: a new technological step

December 22, 2008

As part of its policy targeting the reduction of greenhouse gases, the European Union requires that the proportion of biogenic motor fuels should be increased to 5.75% by the year 2010. In Germany, the Federal Government is aiming for a significantly higher quota of fuels generated from renewable resources by year 2020. Second generation biofuels, as they do not use the edible part of the plant, will contribute to this ambitious objective.

In this context, Lurgi, a 100% subsidiary of the Air Liquide Group, will build a second generation of biofuel plant at Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe, Germany in a joint project with the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT). This pilot plant will demonstrate the viability of the three-stage bioliq® process. Since the first stage of the pilot plant completed in 2007 was successful, it is now entering the second stage.

In this second stage, the bioliqSynCrude® generated from straw in the first step is processed to become synthesis gas. The project covers the engineering, construction, supply, installation and commissioning by Lurgi. Commissioning of the gasifier is planned for autumn 2011. This unit is substantially sponsored by the German Federal Ministry for Nutrition, Agriculture and Consumer Protection under the program for renewable biological resources.

François Darchis, Senior Vice-President Air Liquide Group, in charge of R&D, Advanced Technologies and Engineering & Construction, commented: “We are very proud that the bioliq® project by Lurgi in Germany is being continued. In a world where energy and environmental issues take on greater importance every day, Air Liquide intends to play an active role in creating viable alternative energy solutions. Energy and the Environment remain two of the Group’s growth drivers.”