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Radical New Technology?

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  • Steven Deterling
    While not entirely renewable energy, I thought this group might be interested in some speculation about this company - Changing World Technologies .
    Message 1 of 5 , Jul 31, 2003
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      While not entirely "renewable" energy, I thought
      this group might be interested in some speculation
      about this company - "Changing World Technologies".

      http://www.changingworldtech.com/home.html

      Money Magazine recently had a large article about
      this company. I was unable to find a current URL on
      the Money website with this article (it was there a
      few days ago). Basically, this company claims to have
      a technology called "Thermo-Depolymerization
      Process, or TDP", which they use to treat all forms of
      carbon-based waste (from discarded computers,
      infectious medical waste, mixed plastics, sewage,
      slaughterhouse refuse, tires, etc.), producing high-quality
      oil. AND being able to do this at a very competitive
      price. Needless to say, this is a fantastic claim.

      Discover magazine has also done an article on this
      company recently. It is in the Vol. 24 No. 5 (May 2003)
      issue. This issue is available on the discover.com
      website.

      This company appears to be very legit, the current
      CEO of the company is Brian Appel - who helped
      found Ticketmaster.

      So does anybody think (or know for a fact) that this
      technology is feasible, and the claims being made
      are real?

      Steven Deterling





      Care2 make the world greener!
      Help the planet each day! It's free and easy:
      http://www.Care2.com/dailyaction/
    • Roxanne Boyer
      Steve, I am familiar with similar technologies. It looks to me like a gassification plant operated under such higher pressure that the thermodynamics favors
      Message 2 of 5 , Jul 31, 2003
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        Steve,
        I am familiar with similar technologies.  It looks to me like a gassification plant operated under such higher pressure that the thermodynamics favors some liquid product.  A well known process, however, the heat and pressure are severe.  The capital cost and energy cost to operate such equipment will be enormous.  Before sweeping the idea aside, I'll look into it more and give an update later.  It sounds interesting; thank you for sharing this with the group. 
         
        I think turning waste into fuel and energy is a great idea.  I am all for landfill biogas plants - other wise the gases generated are just released or flared.  Just like we must find a renewable energy source, we must find a sustainable trash solution.  I cringe everytime I pass a mountainous landfill that has grown to incredible proportions in a few years.  I would love to see our waste turned to energy.
         
        Sincerely,
        Chris
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 7:51 PM
        Subject: [hreg] Radical New Technology?

        While not entirely "renewable" energy, I thought
        this group might be interested in some speculation
        about this company - "Changing World Technologies".

        http://www.changingworldtech.com/home.html

        Money Magazine recently had a large article about
        this company. I was unable to find a current URL on
        the Money website with this article (it was there a
        few days ago). Basically, this company claims to have
        a technology called "Thermo-Depolymerization
        Process, or TDP", which they use to treat all forms of
        carbon-based waste (from discarded computers,
        infectious medical waste, mixed plastics, sewage,
        slaughterhouse refuse, tires, etc.), producing high-quality
        oil. AND being able to do this at a very competitive
        price. Needless to say, this is a fantastic claim.

        Discover magazine has also done an article on this
        company recently. It is in the Vol. 24 No. 5 (May 2003)
        issue. This issue is available on the discover.com
        website.

        This company appears to be very legit, the current
        CEO of the company is Brian Appel - who helped
        found Ticketmaster.

        So does anybody think (or know for a fact) that this
        technology is feasible, and the claims being made
        are real?

        Steven Deterling
                
         



        Care2 make the world greener!
        Help the planet each day! It's free and easy:
        http://www.Care2.com/dailyaction/


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      • Robert Johnston
        I don t know what this company does, but depolymerization technologies are on the order of 75 years old or so. You can read about their early applications in
        Message 3 of 5 , Jul 31, 2003
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          I don't know what this company does, but depolymerization technologies
          are on the order of 75 years old or so. You can read about their early
          applications in devulcanizing rubber. Large rubber cracking mills were
          made to create rubber particles from tires and other rubber objects.
          These could then be treated in chemical processes to devulcanize them.
          As you can tell from the piles of rubber tires lying around everywhere,
          this hasn't proved to be an economically or commercially viable process,
          despite many attempts.

          Depolymerization has also been done. But the idea of truly
          depolymerizing, e.g., taking a polymer and converting it back to
          monomers, is quite difficult. There are many side products, yet most
          polymerization schemes require very pure feedstocks, so these waste
          streams have to be cleaned up and that adds cost and produces waste
          (which can probably be burned, but many environmentalists have long
          opposed the waste-to-energy conversion approach). Even if you could do
          this economically, you still have the problem of collecting and
          separating raw materials. The various types of polymers would have to
          be sorted. You wouldn't want PVC with polyesters or polyethylene, for
          instance. And if you didn't cleanly reverse PVC back to vinyl chloride
          and repolymerize it, what would you do with it or with the side reaction
          products? Not to mention getting people to recycle in the first place.
          Studies have shown that the energy cost of sorting and gathering
          plastics substantially offsets the energy value of the materials
          collected/recycled.

          As for energy generation, you could get the most energy by simply
          burning the waste. If instead you depolymerize it and convert some of
          it to monomers, that will leave less for burning. Depolymerization
          itself takes energy, since polymerization is nearly always an exothermic
          process.

          During the 1980's when plastics waste became a hot environmental issue
          (landfill shortages, etc.), depolymerization projects were piloted along
          with other plastics recycling schemes. None of them took off as far as
          I know, since they weren't really viable without subsidization. The
          energy balances just don't add up. In the end, burning is often the
          best option.

          Now, I should note that there has been a trend towards creating
          recyclable parts in several applications. The car companies, for
          instance, have been gradually removing PVC and polyurethanes and
          replacing them with polyolefins. As this process is completed (and it
          takes time, since a lot of materials development and engineering is
          required to make these conversions), we'll eventually get cars that are
          nearly 100% recyclable. At that point, there may be enough concentrated
          plastic to make the economics more viable. We won't get there just from
          recycling household waste.

          Robert




          I've stopped 3,200 spam messages. You can too!
          One month FREE spam protection at http://www.cloudmark.com/spamnetsig/}

          > -----Original Message-----
          > From: Steven Deterling [mailto:rocketman1@...]
          > Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 7:51 PM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: [hreg] Radical New Technology?
          >
          > While not entirely "renewable" energy, I thought
          > this group might be interested in some speculation
          > about this company - "Changing World Technologies".
          >
          > http://www.changingworldtech.com/home.html
          >
          > Money Magazine recently had a large article about
          > this company. I was unable to find a current URL on
          > the Money website with this article (it was there a
          > few days ago). Basically, this company claims to have
          > a technology called "Thermo-Depolymerization
          > Process, or TDP", which they use to treat all forms of
          > carbon-based waste (from discarded computers,
          > infectious medical waste, mixed plastics, sewage,
          > slaughterhouse refuse, tires, etc.), producing high-quality
          > oil. AND being able to do this at a very competitive
          > price. Needless to say, this is a fantastic claim.
          >
          > Discover magazine has also done an article on this
          > company recently. It is in the Vol. 24 No. 5 (May 2003)
          > issue. This issue is available on the discover.com
          > website.
          >
          > This company appears to be very legit, the current
          > CEO of the company is Brian Appel - who helped
          > found Ticketmaster.
          >
          > So does anybody think (or know for a fact) that this
          > technology is feasible, and the claims being made
          > are real?
          >
          > Steven Deterling
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Care2 make the world greener!
          > Help the planet each day! It's free and easy:
          > http://www.Care2.com/dailyaction/
          >
          > ------------------------ Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
          >
          >
          >
          > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
          http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >
        • Robert Johnston
          If you agree to burn it, then you ve got an easy way to reclaim the energy of waste. But this has generally been opposed by environmentalists. Remember the
          Message 4 of 5 , Jul 31, 2003
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            If you agree to burn it, then you’ve got an easy way to reclaim the energy of waste.  But this has generally been opposed by environmentalists.  Remember the Vulcan ship?  How about industrial waste kilns?  Some tires are burned in cement kilns.  But a lot still gets buried.  It seems to me that it would make more sense to burn the waste in a large scale plant, where economies of scale and good gas scrubbing and other purification steps can be taken, than to only partially break it down into an oil (and other waste products that would have to be dealt with), and then send that oil out to 1001 users and have them burn it under less controlled conditions for energy.  If a centralized waste burning facility can generate electricity, then the 1001 users can benefit from the recycled waste without the environmental impact of a distributed system.  Of course, anybody know how hard it is to get a permit for a waste burning plant?!  The bottom line is that we want clean air, and that conflicts with maximum utilization of today’s energy resources.  So we bypass coal and avoid burning waste, and burn natural gas (or biogas) instead.  Ideally, in my view, we’d reclaim waste energy through burning (when it doesn’t make sense to recycle the material itself).  Maybe if environmentalists would be willing to compromise, we could have a win-win deal.  How’s this for an idea?  Allow low cost permits of waste-burning power plant in return for offsets from wind power?  If we allowed more localized air pollution at recycling power plants, but offset it with wind power, maybe the economics for the whole system would look attractive and yet the total air quality reduction would be less than what we have with today’s systems.  Just an idea; haven’t done any calculations to see if it makes sense.  But if projections of limited fossil fuels prove true (and the “peak” date keeps getting pushed back as new reserves are discovered), then eventually the fossil fuels will become too expensive to burn for energy.  If we could built more waste burning plants, and I propose even more coal plants, and offset the pollution from these with wind TODAY, then we can rapidly build a large installed base of wind power in the country today, while also solving the immediate energy crisis.  Then, as fossil fuel costs rise, these plants will become uncompetitive with the by then large base of windpower, which will have achieved economies of scale in production that will make them the low cost producer.  Then all those polluting plants will shut down and all we’ll be left with is wind (or wind + solar, or whatever).  I’m proposing that if we’d all agree to some kind of “grand deal” we could accelerate the whole process of conversion, yet the political will to do it would be there since we’d also solve today’s problems, make coal miners/Western senators happy, etc.  What do you think?  Crazy concept?

             

            Robert

             

             

             


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            -----Original Message-----
            From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
            Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 9:38 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [hreg] Radical New Technology?

             

            Steve,

            I am familiar with similar technologies.  It looks to me like a gassification plant operated under such higher pressure that the thermodynamics favors some liquid product.  A well known process, however, the heat and pressure are severe.  The capital cost and energy cost to operate such equipment will be enormous.  Before sweeping the idea aside, I'll look into it more and give an update later.  It sounds interesting; thank you for sharing this with the group. 

             

            I think turning waste into fuel and energy is a great idea.  I am all for landfill biogas plants - other wise the gases generated are just released or flared.  Just like we must find a renewable energy source, we must find a sustainable trash solution.  I cringe everytime I pass a mountainous landfill that has grown to incredible proportions in a few years.  I would love to see our waste turned to energy.

             

            Sincerely,

            Chris

            ----- Original Message -----

            Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 7:51 PM

            Subject: [hreg] Radical New Technology?

             

            While not entirely "renewable" energy, I thought
            this group might be interested in some speculation
            about this company - "Changing World Technologies".

            http://www.changingworldtech.com/home.html

            Money Magazine recently had a large article about
            this company. I was unable to find a current URL on
            the Money website with this article (it was there a
            few days ago). Basically, this company claims to have
            a technology called "Thermo-Depolymerization
            Process, or TDP", which they use to treat all forms of
            carbon-based waste (from discarded computers,
            infectious medical waste, mixed plastics, sewage,
            slaughterhouse refuse, tires, etc.), producing high-quality
            oil. AND being able to do this at a very competitive
            price. Needless to say, this is a fantastic claim.

            Discover magazine has also done an article on this
            company recently. It is in the Vol. 24 No. 5 (May 2003)
            issue. This issue is available on the discover.com
            website.

            This company appears to be very legit, the current
            CEO of the company is Brian Appel - who helped
            found Ticketmaster.

            So does anybody think (or know for a fact) that this
            technology is feasible, and the claims being made
            are real?

            Steven Deterling
                    
             



            Care2 make the world greener!
            Help the planet each day! It's free and easy:
            http://www.Care2.com/dailyaction/


            Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
            [Scanned by AwesomeNet Anti-Virus]



            Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
          • Roxanne Boyer
            Robert is quite right. After reading the articles and patents, I have to say this thermal depolymerization (TDP) technology is not new, it just has a new
            Message 5 of 5 , Aug 2, 2003
            • 0 Attachment
              Robert is quite right.  After reading the articles and patents, I have to say this "thermal depolymerization" (TDP) technology is not new, it just has a new application.  Changing World Tech is running a coker (commonly found in refineries) on animal waste.  I guess slaughter houses find some economic justification because there is a large cost to dispose of the waste if it can not be recylced back into animal feed.  It don't see that TDP could compete with other recycling technologies when it comes to plastics, tires and heavy organics (like coal). 
               
              I would be suspicious of investing in the company.  Many of the initial backers are from big investment companies.  I've seen many a situation in the last few years where these investers (most notibly Solomon Smith Barney) hype up a small technology company and take it public - there is a huge fan fare and to say about promising to change the world - the backing firm makes millions, and then the technology can't penetrate the market so the common investor is stuck is a loss as the stock price falls and the company goes bankrupt.  Investing in start-up tech companies is like a modern day "gold rush".
               
              -Chris
               ----- Original Message -----
              Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 11:10 PM
              Subject: RE: [hreg] Radical New Technology?

              If you agree to burn it, then you’ve got an easy way to reclaim the energy of waste.  But this has generally been opposed by environmentalists.  Remember the Vulcan ship?  How about industrial waste kilns?  Some tires are burned in cement kilns.  But a lot still gets buried.  It seems to me that it would make more sense to burn the waste in a large scale plant, where economies of scale and good gas scrubbing and other purification steps can be taken, than to only partially break it down into an oil (and other waste products that would have to be dealt with), and then send that oil out to 1001 users and have them burn it under less controlled conditions for energy.  If a centralized waste burning facility can generate electricity, then the 1001 users can benefit from the recycled waste without the environmental impact of a distributed system.  Of course, anybody know how hard it is to get a permit for a waste burning plant?!  The bottom line is that we want clean air, and that conflicts with maximum utilization of today’s energy resources.  So we bypass coal and avoid burning waste, and burn natural gas (or biogas) instead.  Ideally, in my view, we’d reclaim waste energy through burning (when it doesn’t make sense to recycle the material itself).  Maybe if environmentalists would be willing to compromise, we could have a win-win deal.  How’s this for an idea?  Allow low cost permits of waste-burning power plant in return for offsets from wind power?  If we allowed more localized air pollution at recycling power plants, but offset it with wind power, maybe the economics for the whole system would look attractive and yet the total air quality reduction would be less than what we have with today’s systems.  Just an idea; haven’t done any calculations to see if it makes sense.  But if projections of limited fossil fuels prove true (and the “peak” date keeps getting pushed back as new reserves are discovered), then eventually the fossil fuels will become too expensive to burn for energy.  If we could built more waste burning plants, and I propose even more coal plants, and offset the pollution from these with wind TODAY, then we can rapidly build a large installed base of wind power in the country today, while also solving the immediate energy crisis.  Then, as fossil fuel costs rise, these plants will become uncompetitive with the by then large base of windpower, which will have achieved economies of scale in production that will make them the low cost producer.  Then all those polluting plants will shut down and all we’ll be left with is wind (or wind + solar, or whatever).  I’m proposing that if we’d all agree to some kind of “grand deal” we could accelerate the whole process of conversion, yet the political will to do it would be there since we’d also solve today’s problems, make coal miners/Western senators happy, etc.  What do you think?  Crazy concept?

               

              Robert

               

               

               


              I've stopped 3,200 spam messages. You can too!
              One month FREE spam protection at www.cloudmark.com
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              -----Original Message-----
              From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
              Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 9:38 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [hreg] Radical New Technology?

               

              Steve,

              I am familiar with similar technologies.  It looks to me like a gassification plant operated under such higher pressure that the thermodynamics favors some liquid product.  A well known process, however, the heat and pressure are severe.  The capital cost and energy cost to operate such equipment will be enormous.  Before sweeping the idea aside, I'll look into it more and give an update later.  It sounds interesting; thank you for sharing this with the group. 

               

              I think turning waste into fuel and energy is a great idea.  I am all for landfill biogas plants - other wise the gases generated are just released or flared.  Just like we must find a renewable energy source, we must find a sustainable trash solution.  I cringe everytime I pass a mountainous landfill that has grown to incredible proportions in a few years.  I would love to see our waste turned to energy.

               

              Sincerely,

              Chris

              ----- Original Message -----

              Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2003 7:51 PM

              Subject: [hreg] Radical New Technology?

               

              While not entirely "renewable" energy, I thought
              this group might be interested in some speculation
              about this company - "Changing World Technologies".

              http://www.changingworldtech.com/home.html

              Money Magazine recently had a large article about
              this company. I was unable to find a current URL on
              the Money website with this article (it was there a
              few days ago). Basically, this company claims to have
              a technology called "Thermo-Depolymerization
              Process, or TDP", which they use to treat all forms of
              carbon-based waste (from discarded computers,
              infectious medical waste, mixed plastics, sewage,
              slaughterhouse refuse, tires, etc.), producing high-quality
              oil. AND being able to do this at a very competitive
              price. Needless to say, this is a fantastic claim.

              Discover magazine has also done an article on this
              company recently. It is in the Vol. 24 No. 5 (May 2003)
              issue. This issue is available on the discover.com
              website.

              This company appears to be very legit, the current
              CEO of the company is Brian Appel - who helped
              found Ticketmaster.

              So does anybody think (or know for a fact) that this
              technology is feasible, and the claims being made
              are real?

              Steven Deterling
                      
               



              Care2 make the world greener!
              Help the planet each day! It's free and easy:
              http://www.Care2.com/dailyaction/


              Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
              [Scanned by AwesomeNet Anti-Virus]



              Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.




              Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
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