CSIR-CMERI converts Plastic Waste to Fuel

CSIR-CMERI converts Plastic Waste to Fuel

CSIR-CMERI converts Plastic Waste to Fuel: Professor Harish Hirani, Director, CSIR-CMERI, Durgapur, delivered the keynote speech on Tuesday in the ‘Industrial Motivation Campaign on Awareness to MSMEs for transition from Single-Use Plastics (SUP) to alternate materials‘ organised by MSME-DI, Kolkata in association with the Indian Plastic Federation.

Anindya Roy, regional head, Reliance Industries and Rajesh Gauba, head, sustainability and recycling also delivered their perspectives on management of plastic wastes.

Plastic was one of the major industrial breakthroughs of the 20th century and has revolutionised multiple domains subsequently. The PPE kits, diapers and sanitary wares, healthcare accessories, packaging mediums to name a few, are primarily plastic constituents and have had a significant impact upon human behaviour.

Plastic is usually blamed for chokage of sewerage systems, causing floods and breeding diseases. Besides, plastic has also been popularly blamed for harming marine ecology.

Plastic is essentially a man made synthetic material and any attempts at making it biodegradable is disproportional. Plastics should be thermally and chemically-degraded and through innovative application of R&D converted into value-added products.

CSIR-CMERI: Plastic Waste to Fuel

In line with this perspective, CSIR-CMERI developed the integrated Municipal Solid Waste Management Technology (iMSWMT) and the pilot plant of this technology, established in 2017, is the centre-piece of the CSIR-CMERI ‘Zero Waste Colony’.

Durgapur-based CSIR’s institute developed the decentralised solid waste processing facility, using new technology, which can be set up at residential colonies and shopping complexes to convert all types of wastes, including plastic, into one or the other useful end products. This facility won’t require segregation of wastes at the household level.

The iMSWMT has been built in a modular form and the mechanised segregation module is the most significant of them, because it helps in segregating plastic wastes from other waste constituents. The Plastic Pyrolysis Technology converts plastic waste into fuel and thus brings in sustainability factors in plastic processing. This process produces a minimal amount of toxins.

Besides converting solid wastes into plasma state for proper disposal, the generated residues, having good carbon content, from this facility can be used in agriculture as a fertilizer and other non-usable can be utilized to make bricks for construction purposes. The latest technology being used by the Institute for this model can also convert plastics into gas and fuel.

The one tonne per day (TPD) CSIR-CMERI iMSWMT has processed more than 62 tonnes of solid waste, of which almost 7 per cent is plastic waste. CSIR-CMERI has also successfully processed 1.2 tonnes of plastic waste provided by NSPCL. CSIR-CMERI has also processed 2.5 tonnes of legacy wastes, the existing plastic waste already dumped into landfill sites, from the Durgapur Municipal Corporation.

Anindya Roy said that Professor Hirani’s presentation has helped in eradication of all myths associated with plastic usage.

CSIR-CMERI: Plastic Waste to Fuel Technology

IPR Status:Patented by CSIR-CMERI (Secured in India)
Salient Technical Competing Features: Pyrolysis is the thermal degradation of wastes in absence of air that generates a gas often called syngas, liquid oil and solid material called char consisting of ash and carbon. Conversion of waste plastic to fuel minimizes the dumping of plastic into the environment.  

Different types of heating methodology have been developed i.e. electrical resistance heating; combination of diesel and regenerative syn-gas; combination of biogas and regenerative syn-gas; combination of pyrolysis oil and diesel.

After filtration and distillation pyrolysis oil can be utilized as Petro Alternate Fuel (PAF), which can be used in industrial boilers and generators as it has equivalent properties of diesel.
Environmental Consideration:The process is environment-friendly which produces minimal toxins to become released in to the environments since the conversion happens in the anaerobic chamber.

No un-burnt gases are emitted into the environment.

Promotes environmental protection.

State Pollution Control Board has issued “Consent to Operate” for the plant.
Status of Commercialization: Deployed at CSIR-CMERI colony since 2017
Major Raw Materials To Be Utilized :Plastic waste (e.g. polybag, PET, packaging material, tetrapack, etc.)
Major Equipments:Pyrolysis reactor, heating element, burner, condenser, oil storage tank, gas storage tank, cooling tower, shredder etc.
Techno Economic:Capital Cost: Rs. 6.0 L, Operational Cost: Rs. 0.08 L / month, Output:
a) Fuel oil ~ 2 L from 5 kg plastic waste
b) Recovery of tipping fee charges which vary from Rs. 205 to Rs. 235 per refuse collector truck (4 MT)
Technology Package:Technical write-up, manufacturing drawings & operation manual
TRL:TRL 6

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