Centia, an advanced biofuels conversion technology being developed by North Carolina State University, has been awarded a $200k development grant from the Biofuels Center of North Carolina.
The Centia process can take any renewable oil input source, such as oils derived from agriculture crops, algae, animal fats, waste greases, and produce transportation fuels that are 1-for-1 replacements for petroleum-based jet fuel, diesel, and gasoline.
Fuels produced from Centia could be operated in engines, stored, and distributed in an identical manner to fossil fuels today. The process was developed in 2006 by North Carolina State University (NCSU) and has been licensed exclusively by Diversified Energy Corporation.
During this 12-month grant, NCSU will build upon previous test results by demonstrating the end-to-end production of biofuels from a variety of feedstock sources. Starting with one or moreNorth Carolina feedstocks – like crop oils, animal fats, and possibly algal oils – the university will demonstrate all the steps in the Centia process to produce multi-gallon batches of renewable diesel, JP-8/Jet A-1 compliant biojet fuel, and unleaded biogasoline.
The biofuels produced will then be tested in an instrumented single cylinder diesel engine, jet turbine engine, and four cylinder gasoline engine. Dr. William Roberts, professor of mechanical and aeronautical engineering at NCSU and the lead investigator for the grant commented, “The university has been working in earnest to transition this technology from the laboratory to the commercial market. We’ve had a number of technical breakthroughs within the last year and this funding provides us with an excellent start towards commercialization. With oil at $120 barrel we think technologies like Centia that can produce fungible replacements for fossil fuels from a variety of inputs will be in very high demand.”
Jeff Hassannia, VP of Business Development at Diversified Energy, added, “This award is important to Diversified Energy because it brings recognition from a credible organization that this technology has enormous promise. The Centia process is truly unique and we look forward to its continued technical development and transition to the market to address U.S. energy challenges.”
Diversified Energy is supporting the university in providing systems engineering, large-scale plant design, process and economic modeling, and commercialization planning and strategy. The company is also seeking technical and economic partners to support the on-going development and transition of the Centia technology.