Method transforms old tyres into energy

A research group of CSIC, in collaboration with the company ENRECO 2000, has developed a process to transform waste tyres into fuel oil, carbon black and gasses capable of generating electricity. The methodology obtains as much energy from the tyre as it is possible with the minimum emission of polluting gasses. Partners interested in licensing the patent are being sought.

Old tyres.Waste tyres have become an important environmental problem, due both to their large production (around 1.5 billion old tyres are disposed annually) and the difficulties of their recycling, reuse or disposal. Burning them is not a good option, as they produce toxic emissions, pollutant substances such as sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and policyclical aromatic hydrocarbons.

 

Scientists at the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Metalúrgicas (CENIM-CSIC) in collaboration with the company ENRECO 2000 have developed a method to transform wasted tyres into fuel oil, carbon black and gasses capable of generating electricity. The methodology is composed of two steps, distillation and gasification, and obtains as much energy stored in the tyre as it is possible with the minimum emission of polluting gasses.

In the first stage, fuel oil is obtained by distillation and condensation of the volatile fraction. Non-condensed gasses are then transformed into electrical energy, while the solid waste of the distillation stage (called ‘char’) is gasified in a second stage and can be used afterwards as a combustible gas. Also it is obtained a solid waste, composed of ashes and some non-gasified carbon.

Special reactors designed for this process enable to obtain the maximum caloric power of granulated tires. Also, they minimize the reactions that may decrease the quality of the products obtained from the elastomers transformation, especially the chemical composition of the fuel oils and the volatile fraction of the char.

The fuel oil obtained, similar to bio-fuels, can be mixed in diesel up to a proportion of 6%.

This methodology has been chosen by the Astana Economic Forum as one of the most industrially applicable European technologies.

Contact:

Juan Echevarría
Vicepresidencia Adjunta de Transferencia de Tecnología
Tfno. + 34 942  20 67 23
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