Effect of Li-LSX zeolite, NiCe/Al2O3 and NiCe/ZrO2 on the production of drop-in bio-fuels by pyrolysis and hydrotreating of Nannochloropsis and isochrysis microalgae

Giuseppe Bagnato, Florent Boulet, Aimaro Sanna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The purpose of this work was to investigate the viability of a microalgae catalytic pyrolysis/hydrotreating plant to kerosene, diesel and gasoline using Aspen Plus. A series of 2000 dry tonne per day scenarios were simulated with the final goal of determine the price in USD per litre of the drop-in fuels produced and the economic feasibility of the technique at a large-scale. Different scenarios (mechanical, solar and thermal drying), microalgae (Nannochloropsis and Isochrysis) and catalysts (Li-LSX zeolite, Ni-Ce/Al2O3, Ni-Ce/ZrO2). For this work, a systematic design approach by Douglas was considered and the whole process was actualised with the Marshall and Swift Cost Index of 2016. The lowest minimum fuel selling price (1.418 $/L) was found for Isochrysis and Li-LSX-zeolite. Finally, the sensitivity analysis showed that the bio-oil yield was the most influent factor, leading to a variation of the fuel price between 1.158 $/L to 1.751 $/L assuming a 20% of variation.

The techno-economic assessment and sensitivity analysis indicated that Isochrysis and Li-LSX-zeolites are promising for the production of drop-in fuels, but further research is required to further reduce the price of the feedstock production and drying to be competitive with lignocellulosic materials.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnergy
Early online date07 May 2019
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online date - 07 May 2019
Externally publishedYes

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