Energy transformation is a great challenge for economies around the world. This process is a real revolution, which consists of changing the production and use of energy to adapt to sustainable development, which means that from traditional energy sources, such as coal, gas, or oil, we must switch to using renewable and low-carbon energy sources.
Crude oil is of fundamental importance to the world economy as a raw material for the fuel and petrochemical industries and as one of the most essential energy resources.
Here are the fundamental questions:
Is it possible to produce all types of low-emission fuels, low-emission energy, Renewable LNG, and renewable polymers based on one renewable raw material source?
Will planting these oil tree plantations not transpire at the expense of plundering agricultural land?
Will the plantations themselves disrupt the area's biodiversity and aggressively affect other plants, or will they rebuild naturally degraded areas, restoring agricultural values?
This post briefly presents further conclusions, proposals, and solutions from our work on KESSLER's elite varieties of the Pongamia tree. We named our project
KESSLER's PONGAMIA SMART CARBON PLANTATION MODEL.
It should also be unmistakable that the Pongamia tree has many genetic variations worldwide. This tree is trendy in Asian countries as a decorative tree for cities and human settlements. Those genetic varieties do not deliver a valuable yield of seeds in quality or quantity. Some types do not tolerate a wide range of temperatures and do not bear poor soil quality.
All our conclusions, product test results, agrotechnological solutions, and ways of using raw materials refer only to our elite varieties Pongamia 5781-A and 5781-B, cultivated on a pilot plantation in the Negev desert based on ARO and KESSLER research and development delivering dedicated cultivation technologies.
The results of our work so far have confirmed that each part of the fruit of our elite varieties of the Pongamia tree is a high-quality product or raw material for further processing into ready-made goods that are most required on the market. In our SCP model, no semi-finished products/waste will be unused in other production processes.
One of the most important conclusions from our work so far is that based on our Smart Carbon Plantation model and Israeli elite varieties of the Pongamia tree, it is able to produce fully renewable low-carbon fuels and renewable intermediates - raw materials for organic synthesis with a lower carbon footprint.
Pongamia oil - the raw material for the FAME biodiesel production process
An excellent and qualitatively stable raw material, thanks to which it is possible to obtain:
FAME biodiesel in the process of esterification and transesterification
Glycerin of technical and pharmaceutical quality
Pongamia oil - the raw material for the HVO process
Independent leading companies have already confirmed the suitability of our Pongamia oil for the HVO process. In the process, we obtain the following:
Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)
Gasoline fraction for further processing in the process of isomerization or olefin pyrolysis
Pongamia for the olefin pyrolysis process
The renewable gasoline fraction from the HVO process is an intriguing feedstock for the Olefin Pyrolysis process. This feedstock could be an effective solution worth considering and analyzing when producing olefins with a low carbon footprint. The basic olefins include ethylene, propylene, n-butenes, isobutylene, butadienes. Using a fully renewable raw material in this process will give all products the status of renewable olefins.
It is important to mention that most plastics (polymers) currently used are obtained from olefins - PE, PP, PVC, PAN, PS, ABS, PVAc, PVA, polyesters, polyurethanes, polybutene-1, PiB, PMMA, and many others.
Marine fuels from Pongamia
KESSLER's Raw Pongamia oil meets all types of Marine Residual Fuels ISO 8217:2005 requirements. Not only is it a low-carbon marine fuel, but it is virtually sulfur-free (S-2 ppm)
Production of cellulosic ethanol
Cellulosic ethanol produced from waste is one of the biofuel species referred to as second-generation biofuel. The raw material for producing cellulosic ethanol from Pongamia in the process of enzymatic hydrolysis is pongamia shells. Pongamia shells are a waste material obtained from the Pongamia fruit. An excellent and stable composition of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin, with a very low moisture content below 10% and an exceptionally low ash content of 0.6%, makes this raw material ideal for this process. The yield of ethanol from this raw material with the appropriate selection of technology will be about 25%
Ethanol production from Pongamia waste
Production waste from the Pongamia fruit (cake after protein removal) is an ideal raw material for the ethanol production process by fermentation. Pongamia cake from our genetic varieties has an outstanding composition of starch (high content of non-food grade starch!) and other carbohydrates. This composition enables obtaining up to 40% of ethanol from this raw material and is comparable to the production of ethanol from potatoes and corn.
Biomethane and Renewable LNG from Pongamia
Slowly, natural gas is becoming one of the primary fuels used worldwide. Natural gas is a clean natural fuel that is used by many households and businesses. Natural gas is also the primary raw material for producing fertilizers and many other processes. KESSLER's analysis of our Pongamia fruit showed that Pongamia cake, after protein removal (and therefore agricultural waste), due to its composition, is one of the most efficient raw materials for the Anaerobic Digestion process and the production of renewable methane. The yield of biomethane from such a raw material can be compared to corn silage. Undoubtedly, the most significant advantage of biomethane production from Pongamia is qualitative stability, but what is even more critical is the quantitative stability of this raw material for the process. Qualitative and quantitative stability of the right raw material are the most vital elements of the biogas business. Commercial SCP will ensure stable supplies of this raw material and a high yield of biomethane.
Renewable biopolymers from Pongamia - PLA
The discovery of the possibility of producing lactic acid from the fruits of the Pongamia tree resulted from our detailed research on our advanced trees and further production possibilities. Lactic acid is a biodegradable thermoplastic polyester made from renewable raw materials. It is most often found in the form of granules. PLA granules and their blends are used to produce, for example, foils, cups, bottles, fibers, and non-woven fabrics. The ideal raw material for the production of PLA is starch. Detailed analyses of our elite varieties showed a very high seed starch content. However, this content differed quantitatively in each genetic variant. What is very important is that the quality of this starch is not food grade, so there will be no conflict in using the food for other purposes.
Cellulose and modified polymers from Pongamia
Pongamia shells are the source of cellulose used, among others, in producing paper and modified polymers. It is a waste material that is part of the Pongamia fruit. The main advantages of this raw material are that cellulose occurs in a stable amount and Pongamia shells are forest waste. Obtaining cellulose from forest waste is the best solution for this type of industry, and thanks to this, it is possible to reduce the wasteful felling of trees significantly.
Renewable solid biomass from Pongamia - pellets, torrefied pellets for the power industry
Renewable, low-carbon solid biomass is one of the most critical types of low-emission fuels, thanks to which the energy industry will be able to effectively reduce CO2 emissions to the atmosphere and gradually reduce the use of coal for energy purposes. The source of the raw material of the Pongamia tree is Pongamia shells. Pongamia shells are treated as forest waste, and this raw material meets all the classification requirements for the best standard of low-emission fuels. Most importantly, the shells of the KESSLER genetic strains differ significantly from the similar material of other types. First, KESSLER's Pongamia shells from the elite variety 5781-A have stable cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin composition. They practically do not contain heavy metals, chlorine, and sulfur. Compared to others, one of the most noteworthy advantages of this biomass is the ash content of 0.6% - a critical parameter in the combustion process and use. This biomass arrives in the form of ordinary pellets, torrefied pellets, and biochar.