Sep 21, 2012
Company provides training, equipmentBack
Construction|Engineering|Natal|Africa|Bioman Energy|Design|Generators|Industrial|PROJECT|Stainless Steel|System|Waste|Water|Africa|South Africa|Biodiesel Manufacturing Process|Biodiesel Processing|Energy|Equipment|Feedstock Oil|Manufacturing|Mining|Quality Feedstock Oil|Steel|Transport|Janice Whitehead|Waste|Water|BIOFUELS
© Reuse this
The company notes that a significant challenge for the biofuels industry is that not enough quality biodiesel is being produced to meet the 2013 supply target of a 2% biofuels penetration into the current fuel pool, as was outlined in the Biofuels Industrial Strategy that was released by the former Department of Minerals and Energy in 2007.
The extensive use of biodiesel in South Africa is directly impacted on by unsustainable production owing to the high cost and the general unavailability of quality feedstock oil, says Bioman Energy owner Janice Whitehead.
“Until now, the biodiesel industry has been suffocated because of the inability to successfully overcome the barriers of acquiring start-up funding, quality feedstock supply, process training and implementation, as well as peer support.
“Having a sustainable supply of quality feedstock oil is the point of departure for any aspiring biodiesel entrepreneur,” she says.
Bioman focuses on engaging potential entrepreneurs and funders to assist it in overcoming these barriers, while providing quality equipment and training.
Whitehead believes that changing the thinking of business in general from purely a short-term financial gain focus to a longer- term value-added and cooperative business model focus will positively impact on the growth of the biofuels industry.
The training, which pertains specifically to South Africa and the rest of the SADC region, provides information on the latest policy and political decisions that will affect the biofuels sector.
Training highlights issues such as: the way in which biofuel will play a leading role in sustainable mobility in air, sea and land transport; the market and availability for second-generation and advanced biofuel; international trade and sustainability regulations, implementation and impact; trading ethanol and supply-chain challenges; the entrepreneur and the market; sustainability, and biodiesel production tips.
Whitehead says she has been approached to present individual and group training sessions to highlight, specifically, the value of the cooperative and the entrepreneurial models, as well as practical production troubleshooting.
The camp will use the biodiesel to fuel its generators and vehicles on the property.
The 2 000 ℓ/d biodiesel production project was a client-specification installation that used both Bioman and non-Bioman equipment.
The company supplied three settling tanks, dry wash columns with a 200 ℓ/h capacity and all of the equipment and parts.
In addition to Bioman’s scope of work, the client plans to add a methanol recovery unit of its own design between the two 2 000 ℓ settling tanks and the 1 850 ℓ dry wash supply tank.
The company was asked to incorporate a second-hand 2 000 ℓ stainless steel heating tank for use as a reaction or heating vessel.
Whitehead says Bioman may be contracted to assist with the start-up of the project, with the focus on the particular client’s process of using chicken fat as the feedstock oil.
The client will render the chicken fat downhill from the processing equipment, which will require the thicker-than-normal oil to be pumped about 40 m uphill to the biofuels plant.
The challenge of using chicken fat and most waste vegetable oils (WVOs) as feedstock oil is that WVOs contain a mixture of different oils that have different compositions and free fatty acid levels.
This means that some of the oils do not completely convert to biodiesel during processing, which is the most significant problem encountered by biodiesel producers, says Whitehead.
The biodiesel process comprises esterification, transesterification and dry wash processes.
The esterification process entails adding and mixing a small quantity of sulphuric acid and methanol with the low-heated feedstock oil for every litre of waste oil. The mixture is left to settle for a day.
In the transesterification process, a fixed amount of potassium hydroxide and the remainder of the 20% methanol-to-oil ratio is added to the feedstock oil.
The acid added in the first part of the process breaks down the different oils either to oil or to biodiesel, effectively allowing for a complete conversion to biodiesel.
After effective settling of the biodiesel, it is slowly pumped through a lead-lag system of resin-containing columns that absorb impurities, such as water, glycerol and remaining solid particles, from the biodiesel.Further, t
he dry wash process is less labour- and time-intensive and largely eliminates the traditional water wash process, which, in turn conserves water and negates the problem of contaminated water disposal.
Meanwhile, Bioman was contracted by the African Conservation Trust, in St Lucia, KwaZulu-Natal, in April, to upgrade its existing 50 ℓ/d biodiesel unit. It was responsible for the design, planning and supply of additional fittings, consisting of dry wash columns and a 200 ℓ tank that will be added to the existing biodiesel unit.
The company also supplied a 50 ℓ unit to the University of Johannesburg’s School of Mining, Metallurgy and Chemical Engineering in mid-2011 and is communicating with the Vaal University of Technology about the installation of a basic 50 ℓ unit.
Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Biofuels News
For two years, Italy-based industrial research and development company Sunchem have been working on producing jet fuel using a tobacco crop project in Marble Hall, Limpopo, which has proved to be successful in the small-scale trials, says Sunchem SA MD Joost van...
Development financier the Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) signed a cooperation agreement with Argentina-based consortium A & G International in July, which will lead to the production of 25 000 ha of soybeans and other grains for biofuels, human...
Updated 3 hours ago The retail price of 95-grade petrol in South Africa will drop by 45 cents or 3.3 percent a liter from next Wednesday, while wholesale diesel will decrease by 4.9 percent, the government said on Friday. Petrol will cost 13.16 rand ($1.20) a liter while the wholesale...
Updated 3 hours ago Special purpose vehicle GreenCape will, by the end of 2014, make an application to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the Western Cape provincial government and the City of Cape Town to declare Atlantis, on the Western seaboard, a special economic zone...
Updated 4 hours ago The German government has committed a further R70-million towards the second phase of the Non-Motorised Transport (NMT) programme. The NMT programme forms part of the Department of Environmental Affairs’ 2010 FIFA World Cup National Greening Legacy Programme.
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
This Week's Magazine
In the next 20 years, it was expected that, in Africa, more people would live in cities and towns than in rural areas, United Nations Habitat executive director Dr Aisa Kirabo Kacyira said at the Human Settlements Indaba that took place earlier this month in...
Tough-talking Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has committed government to building 1.5-million low-cost houses over the next five years, telling the Human Settlements Indaba in Johannesburg on Wednesday that the State would achieve this target through the...
Over the past 20 years there has been persistent concern about deindustrialisation in South Africa, as well as the fact that locally produced manufactured products have been increasingly displaced by imports.
Financial agreement for Ghanian independent power producer (IPP) Cenpower Generation Company’s $900-million, 350 MW combined-cycle gas-turbine power plant was finalised earlier this month, paving the way for the project’s construction to begin before 2015 in Tema,...
The revenue implications for South Africa of ‘base erosion and profit shifting’ by corporate taxpayers are firmly in the crosshairs of the Davis Tax Committee (DTC) and Judge Dennis Davis hinted last week that recommendations were being considered to “detect and...