In an international collaboration aimed at the green revolution, the Institute for Technological Research (IPT) and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany have partnered to develop a cutting-edge process for the production of green hydrogen.
This novel technique, which capitalizes on the gasification of biomass and thermal reforming of gases, represents a significant stride towards sustainable energy solutions.
The research and development (R&D) initiative is a 12-month project led by IPT’s Bioenergy and Energy Efficiency Laboratory. Within the scope of this project, two central topics are being explored. The first is the production of hydrogen via the gasification of sugarcane bagasse and the thermal reforming of the resultant gas. The second area of focus is hydrogen storage via catalytic hydrogenation of bio-oil, a byproduct of the rapid pyrolysis of sugarcane bagasse.
According to IPT researcher Ademar Hakuo Ushima, the partnership between IPT and KIT is not solely focused on research; it also aims to “promote the exchange and training of researchers from both institutions.” This interaction enriches the intellectual synergy between the two organizations and fosters a collaborative atmosphere conducive to scientific breakthroughs.
Experimental activities associated with the project are taking place at both institutions. The gasification of sugarcane bagasse in a fluidized bed reactor, followed by the thermal reform of the synthesis gas generated, is being carried out by IPT. Meanwhile, the second phase of the process, undertaken at IKFT/KIT, involves the rapid pyrolysis of sugarcane bagasse to generate bio-oil. This bio-oil is then refined into fuel precursors with higher energy content via catalytic hydrogenation.
The outcome of this multifaceted process? The production of 100% renewable products suitable for further refining in commercial plants. These sustainable fuels represent a promising direction in the quest for cleaner and more efficient energy sources.
The execution of the project involves a total of 14 collaborators, including seven researchers from each institution. Additionally, four researchers – two each from IPT and KIT – will be part of an exchange program to share knowledge and expertise.