Waste plastic becomes valuable biofuel

Waste plastic becomes valuable biofuel

March 21, 2019
Marcia González

From trash to treasure, Queensland trial will convert plastic waste into valuable by-products

Scania has supplied a 16-liter engine for an innovative new Australian trial of renewable diesel fuel. With the ultimate goal being commercial-scale production, the fuel will be made from waste plastic, old vehicle tires, agricultural and forestry waste as well as biosolids.

Over the next 12-18 months, Queensland-based company Southern Oil will be trying out renewable diesel from its Advanced Biofuels Pilot Plant in the test engine. The aim is to demonstrate that this renewable fuel can perform identically to petroleum-based diesel.

The high-end Scania V8 test engine is being used in its power generation configuration for the testing, which allows assessment of exhaust emissions, performance and response, fuel efficiency, cost and engine lifetime.

Southern Oil is one of Australia’s leading suppliers of lubricant oil. The company re-refines waste oil to remove all contaminants and restore it to the original condition for reuse. Southern Oil is now aiming to build a commercial-scale renewable fuel refinery within five years.

“Having a company such as Scania endorse our fuel is crucial to creating commercial demand for our diesel and moving from pilot scale into demonstration scale,” commented Tim Rose, managing director, Southern Oil.

But before warranty is secured, an estimated one million liters of the renewable diesel will be trialed at Southern Oil’s advanced biofuels laboratory.

“Warranty by an OEM such as Scania is crucial to commercialization and uptake of the fuel, as it must have the identical performance and characteristics of fossil fuel,” added Annastacia Palaszczuk, Queensland’s State Premier and Minister for Trade. “This trial is a critical milestone for the development of the renewable fuel industry in Queensland.”

Plastic Free World Conference & Expo 2019 will take place from Thursday 27 June to Friday 28 June, at the Kap Europa, Frankfurt Messe, Frankfurt, Germany. To register for this highly focused and solutions-driven event, please click here. For sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, please email peter@trans-globalevents.com

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