Plasma arcs used to reform vegetable oil to syngas.
This is a French patented reactor, claimed to be able to crack VO into syngas, with no coking, tar or soot. It operates at atmospheric pressure with no metallic catalysts. The VO is injected with a small amount of air, which supplies oxygen, [the prof calls it a ‘catalyst’], for the carbon > carbon monoxide reaction that oxidises coke and tars to a combustible gas. The reformation of the bulk of the VO seems to be by exothermic thermal cracking.
A series of 3-phase arcs are struck over 3 equally spaced diverging electrodes, contained in a closed vertical tube reactor. The VO+ air, [at a ratio of about 100 litres of free air per minute to 30 ml/minute of VO], is injected by a gear pump and compressor[?], into the cone formed by the 3 arcs through a 4mm [5/32”] diameter tube. At the above parameters, the device will produce about 13kw [44,000 btu] of gas value from a one litre reactor. This implies some sort of injection spray nozzle? The arcs glide down/up[?] the electrodes and are extinguished at the tips, and then reform at the electrode roots, producing a continuous cone of plasma, [superheated ions], a similar effect to arc breaker horns seen on transmission lines. The arcs are running at about 10,000volts peak at less than 0.1 amperes, and are claimed to consume < 2% of the electrical power of the calorific value of the VO processed. There are no other heating devices, but the assembly is insulated. The syngas produced contains hydrogen, CO, and other combustible gasses, as well as a small % of nitrogen, steam and CO2. Overall [since some of the VO is ‘burned’ in the reactor to provide heat for the exothermic process] the percentage conversion is claimed to be about 70%, which is on a par with Georges Imbert’s Gazogene devices converting wood to syngas. The researchers claim that the VO does not need to be particularly clean – indeed they also claim that the machine can be run on biomass as diverse as powdered bagasse, wood, gycerol or grass clippings in other reports.
The device as described in the literature has a long warm up period of over 30 minutes, limiting it to commercial gas production rather than domestic heating or automobile fuel, but this could be addressed. For automobile use, such a device with rapid startup could be very compact and light- and with VO as the primary fuel, not only 'green and clean' but with a far better range than batteries will ever achieve. http://albin.czernichowski.pagesperso-orange.fr/ECP/CP1%2067%20Rapeseed%20paper.pdf
Google 'GlidArc', I can't get the flaming links to work!