Thursday, November 29, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 8:32 PM


With the increasing price of petroleum fuel and the threat of climate change, the global community is on the lookout for technologies which can be of great help towards energy sustainability. Automakers like Toyota, Honda, Ford, and Volkswagen are developing different engine technologies to make greener vehicles. Japanese automakers are known for hybrids while European car manufacturers are more inclined on the development of diesel engines. But these engines still burn petroleum fuel and thus produce greenhouse gases.

One company which has taken a major step towards developing technologies to solve the world's energy problem is Clyvia Technology GmbH. The said company has succeeded in harvesting diesel from waste materials such as plastic bags, cable sleeves, and even vehicle components. These materials contain petroleum in varying amount. The German company has shown that it is possible to get heating oil and diesel from these trashes.

Christopher Stampfli, the designate CEO Clyvia which is based in Schaffhausen, said: "This process is attractive not just to public and private waste disposal operators, but many industrial corporations and freight operators can apply it to cut their disposal costs and simultaneously generate energy - either for their own vehicle fleet or to sell at the gas station."

According to statistics, about 20 million tons of plastic waste is produced in Europe every year along with 2.5 tons of waste oil. Of the plastic wastes, only half or ten million tons are being reused. This means that a huge amount of plastic wastes can be tapped to produce quality fuel. By recovering the petroleum contained within these materials, a lot of sectors will be benefited.

Plant operators will be raking in profit and consumers will have a better alternative to conventional diesel fuel. According to reports, diesel fuel produced from Clyvia's technology is priced about 25 cents lower than conventional diesel fuel used in the regular equipped vehicles. The environment will also be benefited as this process will reduce the amount of plastic wastes being tossed into landfills.

The Auto Channel describes the process as: "The company uses the method of ‘fractioned depolymerization’, which is similar to cracking crude oil. In a thermal treatment process, long hydrocarbon chains are shortened until they are as long as heating oil or diesel. The method was developed and tested at the end of the 1970s and was proved to work even then, although the general conditions at the time were not suitable for profitable operation of the plant. In its own laboratories, Clyvia Technology GmbH has proved that the transformation of used oil, flushing oil and polymers into diesel or heating oil works."

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