BDI - BioEnergy International AG
- The multi-feedstock technology from the market
Our customised BDI BioDiesel facilities work on the basis of the
multi-feedstock process that we developed.
This process enables us to turn a wide range of raw materials – for instance
used cooking oil, animal fats, trap grease or vegetable oil – into precious
This environmentally friendly, ecologically sustainable process yields
that exceeds the most stringent quality standards worldwide, such as EN14214
and ASTM D6751.
- Types of raw material
The first years of BioDiesel production were characterised by the
utilisation of renewable raw materials. However, faced with the constant
increase in the worldwide demand for food, it became necessary to open up
alternative sources of raw materials. In the meantime, BioDiesel production
based on residual and waste products such as used cooking oils, animal fats
and trap grease has established itself as the way forward – last, but not
least, due to the BDI multi-feedstock technology that we keep evolving
further. However, there is still a huge potential of unused raw materials
out there that needs to be made accessible. BioDiesel production from waste
materials thus fulfils two essential functions: safe waste disposal and
The utilisation of animal by-products that constitute hazardous materials in
a legal sense entails additional official procedures and monitoring and
control mechanisms at the plant. Using BDI multi-feedstock technology also
enables you to utilise hazardous materials (category 1 and 2 animal fats) in
BioDiesel production. The EU has permitted this use in a regulation dating
Used cooking oil
In addition to animal fats, used cooking oil is also available in large
quantities, with every household producing several kilograms of used cooking
oil every year. However, only 5-10 percent of this amount is collected for
further processing in a structured way. By far the largest share is disposed
of via the sewage system, causing problems for purification and waste water
treatment plants. The potential for producing high-grade BioDiesel from used
cooking oil thus remains enormous.
Wherever cooking fats or oils are used – for instance in large-scale
kitchens, restaurants or supermarkets – oil may be filtered as a precious
raw material from waste water. To do this, a grease trap must be installed
at a point where it stops the fat from entering the sewage system. Where
specialised technologies are used, the collected grease is excellently
suited for producing high-grade BioDiesel while also solving what is a
genuine waste problem for many municipalities.
- BDI is the market and technology leader in the
construction of customised BioDiesel plants based on the multi-feedstock
procedure that we developed. This patented technology allows us to turn a
wide range of raw materials such as animal fat, used cooking oil, trap
grease and vegetable oils into high-grade BioDiesel that exceeds the most
stringent quality standards such as EN14214 and ASTM D6751. This technology
imposes no restrictions in terms of FFA content – the entire content of free
fatty acids is turned into BioDiesel, allowing for yields of up to 100%. The
unique flexibility in the use of raw materials, the highest possible yield,
the quality of the product, the low operating and maintenance costs and the
well-known reliability of BDI plants ensure the highest level of economic
No restrictions for FFA
For the processing of raw materials with a particularly high content of free
fatty acids, BDI has developed its RepCat technology. This highly innovative
process allows for the processing of raw materials with an FFA content of up
to 100%. A further benefit that distinguishes RepCat from other industrial
processes is that it yields a completely saline-free glycerine grade with a
minimum glycerine content of 95%, achieved through the complete recycling of
the catalyser. The glycerine thus produced is a highly sought-after, easily
marketable product used in a wide range of applications in other industries.
Technological competitive advantages
- Maximum flexibility in terms
of raw materials – no restrictions regarding FFA content
- Highest possible yield
- No waste accumulated during the process – only reusable by-products
- Exceeds all current and future quality standards
- Many years’ global experience in large-scale industrial applications
- The solution for industrial and communal waste
The special BDI BioGas technology is intended for industrial and
municipal users. A wide range of starting materials may be used in the
process, such as organic waste or by-products from the food or biofuel
The reliable, stable bio-technological process and the compact size of the
system allows for industrial BioGas production that is characterised by the
highest possible level of profitability.
BDI BioGas Technology
- Substrate Management
BDI BioGas technology enables us to produce high-grade BioGas from any
kind of organic waste and residual material. In addition to any desired
mixture of different raw materials, our technology is also capable of
processing a single type of raw material, without adding further substrates.
Anaerobic fermentation & BioGas treatment
Our highly developed BDI BioGas technology is especially intended for BioGas
production from a wide range of different, sophisticated industrial and
municipal waste products that are available all year round. We guarantee the
highest possible level of efficiency for any starting material, thus also
ensuring extremely high profitability.
Fermentation residue processing & waste water purification
Fermentation residue is a precious by-product of the fermentation
process that may be further processed into clean water and fertiliser. The
separation is performed by the BDI fermentation residue processing
technology where the liquid content is treated in the membrane-bio reactor (MBR)
system to yield clean water.
BioGas from reused material is a flexible source of energy and may be used
for the following applications:
- Production of electricity, steam and hot water by means of a combined heat
and power unit
- Production of heat for local supply
- Purified bio-methanol that may be fed into the gas grid or used as a
bio-fuel for vehicles
- Customised, complete industrial solutions Implemented by a reliable, professional plant construction expert
- Continuous, permanent operation
No deposit of settling sediments (e.g. sand, glass etc.) in the system
- Low operating cost, high flexibility in terms of raw materials
No chemical additives, even the highest nitrate values in the substrate are admissible
High degradation rate and fast gas production Patented fermenter design to support optimum contact between the substrate and micro-organisms. Prevention of foam formation and floating layers.
- As a specialist in the processing of industrial and
municipal waste and residue products, BDI has demonstrated its overall
competence, from engineering all the way to plant construction, in numerous
international BioGas projects.
All BioGas plants realised by BDI display a high level of process
reliability and thus also year-round availability.
BioGas plant Göss
- Start of construction: Spring 2015
Handover: Beginning 2016
- Capacity: Steam boiler: 0,71 MWth
CHP: 0,45 MWel; 0,47 MWth
- Substrates: spent grain: 18.300 t/a
surplus yeast: 1.450 t/a
- filtration sludge: 900 t/a
Substrate volume: 20.650 t/a
- Products: BioGas, electricity & heat, high-value digestate
BDI´s Scope: engineering, project management, plant construction, commissioning, after-sales service, plant operation
CO2 reduction: 1.257 t/a resulting from substitution of natural gas in the brewery
Other BioGas projects
- Pamukova, Turkey – planning and construction of the overall plant
- Podlasie, Poland – planning and construction of the overall plant
- Etampes, France – planning and construction of the overall plant
- Marl, Germany – planning and construction of the overall plant
- Este, Italy – planning and construction of the overall plant
- Portland, Oregon, USA – statutory engineering approval procedures
- Benet, France – Planning and delivery of the waste separation
- Plant optimisation from the technology leader
BDI can improve and optimise your existing BioDiesel plant: the BDI RetroFit
programme was developed especially for existing large-scale facilities and
increases flexibility in terms of raw materials as well as improving the
quality of the BioDiesel.
After implementing the programme, low-grade raw materials such as cooking
oils, animal fats and trap grease can also be used.
BDI BioDiesel distillation ensures that the quality of the produced
BioDiesel remains constantly high even when using low-grade raw materials.
- Quality requirements for BioDiesel are becoming more
stringent all the time – due to more demanding legal specifications on the
one hand and increasingly sophisticated customers on the market on the
other. This constitutes a great challenge for BioDiesel plant operators.
Rising prices for highly refined plant oils and the deteriorating quality of
cost-efficient residual and waste products mean that highly flexible
technologies are now required to process a broad, wide-ranging mix of raw
materials. Of course, we are also seeing a stronger political willingness to
make the energy supply sector more independent, to process waste and
residual products into clean energy and to become more “green” in a
At the moment, the entire BioDiesel production sector must conform to
international quality standards such as EN14214 and ASTM D6751. In addition,
plant operators should also start preparing for even more stringent
parameters in future. For plants using obsolete technology, having to live
up to high quality criteria may have a negative effect on yield, plant
capacity or raw material flexibility.
Your plant should be able to process 100% of your raw materials into
high-grade BioDiesel, without using precious triglycerides and free fatty
acids during the process.
If you wish to fully utilise the potential of your investment, your plant
should definitely achieve the nominal capacity that you paid for.
Flexibility in terms of raw materials
Technologically obsolete plants require highly refined, expensive plant oils
for their operation.
State-of-the-art plants, on the other hand, are able to operate at least
partially or even exclusively with lower-cost raw materials such as used
cooking oils, trap grease or low-grade animal fats
With a state-of-the-art plant, you will be able to generate additional
yields – for instance with high-grade glycerine – while obsolete plants
produce waste products such as filter material, soap stock and free fatty
Your plant should run using a stable, robust process all year round.
Unwanted downtime will cause unforeseeable losses.
Obsolete plants require pricy sodium methanolate as a catalyst – new
plants run on much cheaper operating materials.
Health and safety standards for plants are becoming more and more stringent
all the time.
Only state-of-the-art facilities live up to existing and future safety
standards and guidelines.
- Every BioDiesel plant is unique. For this reason,
one-fits-all solutions to improve individual parameters such as yield,
product quality or flexibility in terms of raw materials are not productive.
For optimum results, a customised overall concept needs to be developed for
each plant and only those technological solutions be implemented that best
fit the individual facility.
No one does this better than BDI: building on our experience gained in more
than 30 realised BioDiesel plants using our own technology, we are able to
identify and optimise the correct individual elements to make a successful
The result – sustainable improvement of your plant performance.
In many cases where quality requirements and capacity volumes are not
complied with, this failure is due to the fact that the basic layout of the
technology does not reflect all framework conditions in the best possible
As we have a wide range of BioDiesel technologies available, there are
countless possibilities for process optimisation – from adjustments in the
use of operating materials all the way to the complex integration of new
process steps – a great many things may be done.
Preparation of raw materials
To be able to use raw materials of different qualities for BioDiesel
production, it is necessary to remove components that hinder and inhibit the
process. The wide range of different raw materials such as vegetable oils,
used cooking oil, animal fats and trap grease means that there is a broad
spectrum of products available for preparing these materials.
To comply with increasingly stringent, essential parameters in the current
BioDiesel standards – for instance monoglycerine content, overall
contamination or sulphur content – it is often necessary to install a
downstream distillation column.
Based on the know-how that we have accumulated over the years, BDI has
developed several different distillation options.
High FFA esterification
Raw materials with a high content of free fatty acids (more than 20%)
cannot be processed into standard-compliant BioDiesel without the
appropriate pre-treatment. BDI has developed a process for this that allows
for the utilisation of raw materials with a free fatty acid content of up to
99%, for instance distilled palm fatty acids (PFAD), animal fats and trap
grease. This entails several benefits for plant operators, for instance the
opening up of new sources of raw materials, lower overall raw material costs
and the use of fewer chemicals.
Glycerine is a by-product of BioDiesel production with a standard purity
of 80%. By means of additional processing steps, it can be turned into a
higher-grade product that is a great deal more profitable on the chemicals
market as it is used in a number of technical and pharmaceutical
applications. Depending on customer specifications and the raw material
used, BDI is able to upgrade glycerine into technical glycerine (purity
content from 98.5%) according to the pharmacopoeia.
- Based on our many years’ experience in BioDiesel plant
construction, BDI is able to identify improvement possibilities in any
existing plant and to draw up and implement appropriate solutions. Ever
since the introduction of the RetroFit programme, BDI has proved this
competence in numerous fully implemented projects, making plants with highly
different underlying technologies all over the world fit for the future.
Key facts reference plants
Customer: Crimson Renewable Energy L.P. / Bakersfield
Implemented in: 2014
Underlying technology: BDI multi-feedstock
Scope: BioDiesel purification step, Installation of by-product
Result: Improve of BioDiesel and glycerine quality, Implementation of
new by-product (fertilizer)
Delivery of process vessels and tricanter
Increase of profitability with high quality materials
Customer: Argent Energy
Implemented in: 2011
Underlying technology: BDI multi-feedstock
Scope: implementation of raw material preparation and “High FFA”
Result: use of cheaper raw materials, capacity expansion, improvement
Other RetroFit projects
2011, Renewable Energy Group (REG) – implementation of new
transesterification and BioDiesel washing process
2011, Barcelona, Spain – new phase separation unit for glycerine
2011, Lünen, Germany – sulphur reduction unit
2011, Altorricon, Spain – BioDiesel distillation
2010, Malchin, Germany – modification of process control system
2009, Arnoldstein, Austria – waste water treatment plant
2005, Malchin, Germany – sulphur reduction unit
- BDI bioCRACK process – a globally unique refinery integrated
biomass-to-liquid concept for 2nd generation biofuels
This innovative bioCRACK technology was significantly boosted between 2010
and the present due to the cooperative collaboration between OMV (Location
Schwechat) and BDI. OMV supported the project with resources and post
processing as well as the valuation of the liquid raw products. The
scientific monitoring happened by the Institute of Chemical Engineering and
Environmental Technology (CEET) of the Technical University Graz (processing
of byproducts). An experimental approach was realized with the construction
of a pilot plant for diesel production in the refinery Schwechat and its
operation of several years.
bioCRACK - Technology
- In the patented bioCRACK process, with the help of liquid
phase pyrolysis in a hot carrier oil with temperatures of up to 400°C and
atmospheric pressure due to pyrolysis reaction the solid biomass (e.g. Wood
or straw) is transformed in short-chain hydrocarbons. Due to the interaction
between biomass and carrier oil, hydrocarbons with high hydrogen saturation
arise which originate from the carrier oil as well as from the biomass. This
innovative approach only gains on economic importance due to a decisive
technical detail. The carrier oil is replaced by a cost effective
intermediate product from the oil refinery (vacuum gas oil – VGO) at the
bioCRACK process. This intermediate product is not directly usable as fuel
because at room temperature it shows a similar consistency as margarine. In
a refinery, the VGO has to be devided and processed under high temperature
and pressure with help of a fluidised bed cracker (FCC). With this treatment
the VGO is transformed in Diesel only in low parts but more in short-chained
petrol, which in Europe can’t be settled in this amount and has to be
exported. BDI provides this unique service for mineral oil companies to
produce 2nd generation biofuels.
Advantages of bioCRACK
- feasible with little technical effort and cost effective to operate
- high feedstock flexibility and quick to apply
- synergy effects between BtL-technology and conventional mineral oil industry
- the end product can be fed into refinery directly
- the product can, with an existing refinery unit, be implemented into a diesel-like fuel phase with biogenic share, which meets the existing diesel fuel standard EN590
- through existing distribution channels the produced fuel can directly reach the users/consumers – without adaption of the distribution network
- verifiable GHG savings of significantly more than 83% according of to a study of the Joanneum Research, 2015
- the by-products like lean gas and pyrolysis products (pyrolysis oil, coal) can be utilized energetically or be enhanced into valuable products
bioCRACK - References
- Cooperation with Austrian mineral oil company OMV
- Cooperation with Austrian Mineral oil company OMV
- Pilot plant fully integrated in OMV refinery
- Project duration: April 2012 – End 2014
- Service cost: € 7 Mio (state-subsidized by Austrian Climate & Energy Fund)
- Raw materials: lignocellulosic biomass, VGO
- Input capacity: 2,4 t biomass/d
- Output capacity: 500 t raw diesel/a
- Products: raw diesel, bio-char, bio-oil