Crop Biotech Update

New Technology Converts Glycerin Into Fuel for Electrical Power

May 16, 2008
Glycerin (or glycerol) is a viscous by-product from the reaction of vegetable oil and alcohol in the production of biodiesel. The projected increase in biodiesel production is expected to result in more of  this by-product. Even if glycerin can be used by the pharmaceutical and personal care industries, not all can be absorbed, and an unwanted “glycerin glut” is still expected. This presents a challenge in by-product/waste utilization in the biodiesel industry. Recently, an American company (Xcel Plus Global Holdings, Inc.) acquired a new technology which can convert glycerin into a suitable turbine-engine fuel for electrical power generation. The Energy Current website reports, that the product, called “Gly-Clene” (trademark), is produced after the addition of a “cracking agent” to glycerin. Estimates of Xcel Global Holdings, Inc., in the United States  show sufficient glycerin to produce 27,000 Megawatts of electricity per day. The new technology can help biodiesel producers process unwanted glycerin into renewable fuel..