Phoenix BioEnergy LLC, USA

Gasification Innovation

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Phoenix BioEnergy LLC USA
7254 Old Plank Road
Jacksonville, FL  32254-2755


 PhoenixBioEnergyGasificationBrochure.pdf [Adobe Acrobat PDF - 2.23 MB] 

Bob Tyer, the inventor of Phoenix BioEnergy’s gasification technology, owned and operated a 75 employee metal fabrication and machining company for thirty years, starting in the 1960’s. This company was a major subcontractor for Babcock and Wilcox, a leading international provider of energy products and services. With experience gained from hands on involvement in steam related power generation, Bob recognized the market niche for a 250 to 500 ton per day (tpd) constant through put machine to generate heat from virtually any solid fuel, which would replace the labor intensive Dutch Ovens being used at that time.

Drawing from his years of experience, Bob designed and developed several prototype gasifiers and after finalizing the design, he constructed a full size 350 tpd system in Jacksonville, Florida. The gasifier was operated in a production mode using many types of feed stocks, alone and in combinations, such as wood waste, wood chips, bark, sawdust, paper mill sludge & automobile shredder waste. Bob recognized that the disposal of municipal solid waste (MSW) into a landfill was both an environmental disaster and a waste of a perpetual fuel supply. Consequently, the primary gasifying effort of the full size plant was the preparation of MSW into refuse derived fuel (RDF) and its gasification to a point of efficiency that air quality was not compromised. These efforts were acknowledged by a $750,000 (1970 Dollars) US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY grant issuance for the testing of the system. The technology drew the attention of the Boeing Alternative Energy Department, a division of Boeing Aircraft. Boeing entered into an option licensing agreement for the manufacturing and marketing of this technology.

This next phase of the emerging technology was assigned to Boeing Project Engineer Robert Fitch. The performance of the technology in the field as witnessed by Boeing and combined with the positive reports documented within the US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY’s, "Technical and Economic Evaluation of the Auger Combustor", encouraged Boeing to enter into a formal licensing agreement for the exclusive manufacturing and marketing rights. Boeing invested significantly, with time and finances, into the scientific and engineering study to prepare the technology for commercial applications worldwide. Tyer remained as a Boeing consultant for two years, continuing to perfect the gasifier technology in the form of designing patents and overseeing the testing of the gasification technology. At the beginning of the 1980's a paradigm shift in the geopolitical world generated an artificial plummeting of crude oil prices. The US Government withdrew the alternative fuel incentive from the energy table. The world was swimming in a glut of cheap imported oil. Boeing, in response to stockholder pressure, refocused their efforts exclusively into the design and manufacture of aircraft. Boeing's alternative energy efforts were dissolved and they subsequently relinquished the Gasifier technology license agreements.

For the remainder of the 20th century, the world experienced plentiful and cheap oil which proved to be a marketing hurdle that could not be overcome. At the beginning of the 21st century, a worldwide energy demand coupled with the geopolitical environment saw fossil fuel prices escalating as witnessed by $150.00 per barrel spike in crude oil prices.

With the current market demand for alternative energy, Phoenix BioEnergy LLC was formed in 2008 to commercialize the gasification technology that had been perfected during the early 1980’s.  Phoenix BioEnergy issued its first license to ICM, Inc. of Colwich, Kansas.