Since its foundation in 2007 SunCoal has realized successfully a variety of reference projects where SunCoal’s Technology Base has proven technically, economically and ecologically advantageous compared to conventional technological solutions.
In order to make good things even better, SunCoal invests a lot of efforts in further R&D projects with partners from research and industry.
Project name: 031B0063B – Hydrothermal Refinement of lignin to technical carbons for high-value material uses (LignoCarb)
Duration: 10/01/2015 – 09/30/2017
Volume: approx. 1.200.000 EUR
Network: BioEconomy Cluster
Objective: The project’s objective is to improve the profitability of established and developing fractionation processes for biomass by refining lignin fractions to technical carbons for high-value material uses. In order to reach this objective, SunCoal’s CarboREN technology which is based on the principles of hydrothermal carbonization will be adapted in laboratory and pilot scale for lignin as a feedstock and technical carbons as an end-product.
Project name: 033RK031A – Refinement of carbohydrate-rich streams to bio-based chemicals (BBCHEM)
Duration: 03/01/2016 – 08/31/2018
Volume: approx. 750.000 EUR
Objective: The objective of this project is the development of an industrial hydrothermal process that enables the conversion of carbohydrate-rich streams to bio-based platform chemicals. In terms of products the focus is on 5-HMF and furfural, which can be processed in established chemicals end-products. The hydrothermal process will be based on SunCoal’s CarboREN-technology for the generation of solid technical carbons. The technology will be adapted and optimized in order to enable the production of bio-based chemicals from carbohydrate-rich streams without further purification steps.
Project name: 03KB074A – Entrained flow gasification with biochar from hydrothermal carbonization for decentralized energy supply of electricity and heating with a combined heat and power unit (FLUHKE)
Duration: 10/01/2012 – 09/30/2016
Volume: approx. 1.550.000 EUR
Program: Energetic biomass utilization
Objective: Together with the Institute for Energy Systems from the Technical University of Munich the conversion of biochar in an entrained-flow gasifier will be investigated. Entrained-flow gasification is a robust gasification process, which, with the addition of gasification air, generates a fuel containing carbon monoxide and hydrogen. Due to the characteristics of biochar, gasification can be carried out at temperatures around 1000 °C, as well as at low processing periods. Through the relatively high gasification temperature, especially when compared to other wood gasification processes (fixed-bed, fluidized bed), the generation of a low-tar fuel gas is ensured. The purified producer gas generated should be used highly efficiently and decentrally in a Gasmotor-BHKW for power and heat generation, and developed on a scale < 2 MWel. For the investigation of the gasification, the Institute for Energy Systems operates both atmospheric and supercharged pressure entrained-flow gasification facilities in its own technical department.
Results: In this project the technical feasibility of an entrained-flow gasification with biochar from hydrothermal carbonization for decentralized energy supply of electricity and heating with a combined heat and power unit has been validated. The economic evaluation has shown that the application of the developed technology is possible especially in niches which have to be identified to target potential customers. Alternatively, an adapted EEG support could be helpful for a market entry.
Project name: BIG-FuE: SLUDGECARB
Duration: 01/01/2016 – 12/31/2016
Volume: approx. 100.000 EUR
Funded by: Investment Bank of the Land Brandenburg
Objective: The project’s objective was to bring SunCoal’s CarboREN®-Separation Technology for the utilization of organic sludges from waste water treatment plants to the market
Results: The project’s objective could be achieved by collaborating with SunCoals licensee Valmet to develop a plant concept which is based on SunCoal’s former work in laboratory and pilot scale as well as SunCoal’s patented CarboREN®-Technology. In this way, SunCoal transferred experimental results in engineering documents like a carbonization model, a mass and energy balance, process flow diagrams and process description. On this basis, Valmet could plan, calculate and design an industrial plant concept which is now available on the market.
Project name: 80162881 – Expansion of a production site for the construction of plants and equipment for the production of biocoal
Duration: 09/03/2014 – 09/19/2016
Volume: 175.000 EUR
Program: GRW Verbesserung der regionalen Wirtschaftsstruktur
Results: Within this funded project SunCoal invested in its production plant and laboratory in order to expand and diversify its range of services. Both, the plant and the laboratory have been adapted for sample productions of tailor-made technical carbons in small tonne scale. These sample productions are necessary for the validation of process parameters for the construction of demonstration or industrial plants as well as the validation of product qualities and application tests.
Project name: 85014427 – Beschäftigung eines Werkstudierenden im Rahmen eines betrieblichen Innovationsprojektes
Duration: 11/04/2016 – 04/05/2017
Volume: 3.780 EUR
Program: Brandenburger Innovationsfachkräfte
Results: Since 2013 SunCoal develops a process for the separation and refinement of lignin from black liquor. After completing the first production campaigns in SunCoal’s pilot plant in 2016 the engineering department started to identify technical problems and to optimize the entire process. In further production campaigns, process parameters have been validated in order to register intellectual property rights. The main task of the working student was the support of the engineering department.
Project name: 85015168 – Beschäftigung eines Werkstudierenden im Rahmen eines betrieblichen Innovationsprojektes
Duration: 11/15/2016 – 05/14/2017
Volume: 3.780 EUR
Program: Brandenburger Innovationsfachkräfte
Results: Since 2013 SunCoal develops a process for the separation and refinement of lignin from black liquor. In this project SunCoal’s laboratory/development department examined a process which is able to convert less purified black liquor to technical carbons. In order to achieve this goal SunCoal carried out a laboratory phase to identify the optimal parameters for this process. The main task of the working student was the support of the laboratory/development department.