One of the most revolutionary technologies is biofuel: fuel derived from biomass and containing 80 percent renewable materials. Biofuels such as bioethanol and biodiesel offer vast savings of carbon dioxide emissions compared with petrol and thus contribute significantly to improving our environment.
BioGasol is a combined biotechnology and engineering company in the renewable energy field and a spinout from the Technical University of Denmark (DTU). The company’s pilot plants have produced second generation bioethanol since the foundation in 2006. BioGasol decided to build a demonstration facility on the island of Bornholm that would scale up their bioethanol production. The integrated ‘BornBioFuel’ plant is designed to demonstrate BioGasol’s proprietary enabling technologies within pre-treatment and C5 (Pentose) fermentation on an industrial scale as well as feedstock flexibility. This means the plant will be able to convert agricultural residues such as wheat and barley straw, energy crops, garden waste and grass from roadsides.
Making the difference
While BioGasol had the required project execution knowledge to execute the project themselves, the amount of work involved in the project exceeded their capacity. Furthermore, being a start-up company, BioGasol required a project execution methodology and framework in order to undertake such a complex project with a budget of approx. EUR 35 million. So they needed an engineering partner to fill in their resource gaps and ensure control of the project execution.
Our biotechnological background and biofuel project experience made NNE Pharmaplan an excellent match for the project. BioGasol hoped to draw on our extensive process and project planning knowledge – also outside the pharmaceutical segment – and they knew our proven ability to adjust processes to individual customer needs and provide tailored solutions would benefit their new facility.
We acted as consultants within project management, procurement and special engineering tasks that required our unique know-how and specialist knowledge. BioGasol also used us as process consultants within hydrolysis, fermentation and distillation, mass balance calculations, heat/cooling integration and CIP concepts.
When finished, the process concept will allow the plant to be energy self-sufficient as the heat and power in the plant can be integrated with an external energy system. And all process water will be re-used in the plant, thus minimising waste as well as water consumption.
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