Plasma reformer technology is emerging as a fundamental building block of clean energy, able to convert multiple carbon-based fuel sources into a clean H2+CO gas called Syngas. Syngas which can be used in many ways, including:
With so many applications of the technology at hand, plasma reformers are on their way to becoming the next breakout energy device implemented around the world. It is possible that every combustion engine will eventually employ a plasma reformer, as a means of maximizing their embodied value while ensuring cleaner, greener operation. The most popular technologies to integrate to include:
Syngas can be separated to provide pure H2 to technologies that need a source of hydrogen on-site and on-demand which removes the hydrogen storage challenges that some technologies face. For example, H2-SCR is much more effective with a source of on-board hydrogen since running out of hydrogen (using storage) would negate the entire emission control system. As well, plasma reformers can extend the usefulness of flow batteries to work beyond storage, but also production of electricity on or off-grid where fuels can be converted.
Methane, the gas produced extensively by the livestock industry worldwide, traps up to 100 times more heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide within a 5 year period, and 72 times more within a 20 year period. Emissions of methane and natural gasses are damaging to the environment so organizations capture and pipe the gasses or flare them which results in wasted energy and emissions from the flared fuels. It is estimated (as of 2011) that global gas flaring wastes $29.8 billion dollars annually and that represents 25% of the entire natural gas market in the United States. Plasma reformers can help industry clean the gasses so that they can be consumed and turned into electricity or liquid fuels.
Plasma Reformers are poised to achieve the highest standards that regulators can enforce. The technology is so versatile that it is relevant to every combustion engine, fuel cell and Gas-to-Liquids technologies. There are boundless amounts of wasted fuels that can be converted to useable energy because of plasma reformers. As regulators raise the bar, industry will rely on plasma reformers to solve new challenges.
Daniel Wells received International recognition after being awarded the "America's Next Top Energy Innovator" Award from the Department of Energy and by winning the CTSI Defense Energy Technology 2012 Challenge by developing an energy positive emission control system including HC, CO, PM and NOx reduction.
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Copyright Daniel Wells 2015.