Stockholm – Swedish recycled carbon black maker Enviro has announced research results showing that the pyrolysis oil it extracts from scrap tires can be used as fuel.
This is the conclusion of a study with independent Swedish research institute RISE and waste-management firm Ragn-Sells, the company said 14 Jan.
“We’ve demonstrated that fuel can be produced from tires," Linda Sandström, project manager at RISE, reported in the Enviro statement.
The research, she added, has shown that "pyrolysis oil is a feasible way for the petrochemical industries to reduce their consumption of fossil oil.”
Started in October 2017, the project set out to evaluate three different approaches for upgrading pyrolysis oil to higher grade products.
Based at the RISE Energy Technology Centre’s laboratory in Piteå, Sweden, the team conducted pilot-scale studies, upgrading pure fossil oil to oil with 20% pyrolysis oil.
The research work, said Sandström, showed that that there were no significant differences between the two.
The next stage is to verify the findings as well as to prepare for commercialisation of using pyrolysis oil in fuel.
“We’re looking for a refinery that’s willing to accept pyrolysis oil as a raw material for production and thereby start reducing its consumption of fossil oil,” said Sandström.
“Once we’ve shown that the concept can be commercialised and that it’s profitable, the general hope is for the industry to be willing to participate and develop it further,” the project manager added.
The goal is for pyrolysis oil to be priced on the basis of its value to the petrochemicals industry, including in terms of sustainability.
Enviro is extracting about 500 kilos pyrolysis oil from 1 tonne of tires by means of Enviro’s patented technology, said Thomas Sörensson, CEO of Enviro.
With a plant that processes 30,000 tonnes of tires annually, that’s around 14,000 tonnes of oil per year available for the market, he noted.
“In other words, the financial potential is substantial,” Sörensson. “We're looking forward to continuing the project and to explore the environmental and commercial benefits further.”