AFR designs and develops new technologies for advanced energy production,
conversion, and utilization.
AFR is involved in several projects to develop components of fuel cell
power systems. These include: 1) the production of microporous carbons for
gas storage; 2) pre-processing of diesel fuels for hydrogen production; 3)
pyrolysis processing of waste materials for fuel gas production.
Solar to Vehicle to Grid (S2V2G)
AFR has developed a potential implementation for a concept known as Solar
to Vehicle to Grid (S2V2G). According to this scheme, a plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) is
charged during the day, while the car is at work, using solar energy (or
another renewable source). The car is then used in the evening as a source
of electricity in the home. After midnight, when the base load electricity
demand is low, the car is recharged from the grid for the commute to
work in the morning. For additional details and economic calculations, see
the following S2V2G presentation.
AFR has extensive experience in biomass pyrolysis studies. Samples
studied include lignin, cellulose, hemi-cellulose, wheat straw, cornstalk,
Populus deltoides (hardwood), Pinus radiata (softwood). The effects of
pyrolysis conditions on product yields and char reactivity have been
studied and kinetic models for pyrolysis product evolutions have been
AFR has performed several projects related to conversion of waste
materials, such as used tires, into useful products. A pyrolysis process
was developed for conversion of used tires into activated carbon, carbon
black, and fuel gases. A hydrothermal treatment process for lignins
derived from pulping operations was developed for production of carbon
materials such as carbon fibers, brake pads, and activated carbon. Under
NASA funding, a pyrolysis process was developed to recycle plant biomass,
paper, plastic, and human wastes into useful products. A recent white
paper summarizes the NASA projects and publications:
Process Development at Advanced Fuel Research, Inc. (AFR).
Download a copy of one of AFR's scrap tire research papers:
Pyrolysis of Scrap Tires.
Can it be Profitable?
AFR has been involved in several carbon materials projects, including:
1) microporous carbons for hydrogen storage; 2) carbon molecular sieve
membranes for gas separations; 3) carbon black from oils derived from
scrap tires; 4) tire-derived activated carbons for mercury control; and 5)
value-added carbon materials from lignin.
AFR has developed a patented process for the removal and
recovery of mercury from combustion flue gas with simultaneously control
of SO2 and NOx (US Pat. No. 6,103,205 and 6,322,613). The approach is
based on regenerative adsorption on activated carbons derived from used
AFR has been involved in several projects related to the
characterization and utilization of liquid fuels and lubricants. These
include: 1) correlation of the combustion properties of aviation fuels
with FT-IR spectral data; 2) measurement and prediction of the thermal
stability of aviation fuels using FT-IR methods; 3) evaluation of fuel
stability additives using FT-IR methods; 4) characterization of the purity
of synthetic lubricants using TG-FTIR methods; 5) development of a
portable FT-Raman instrument to characterize fuels for aircraft and land
vehicles; 6) pre-processing of diesel fuels to produce hydrogen for fuel
AFR has had extensive experience in coal conversion R&D, including
pyrolysis, gasification, liquefaction, maturation and combustion. Many
novel laboratory scale experiments and models have been developed. AFR's
Functional-Group Depolymerization, Vaporization, Crosslinking (FG-DVC)
model of coal pyrolysis has been used by most of the leading coal research
laboratories in the world. AFR has also developed an extensive database on
the characterization of internationals coals using a variety of methods,
including FT-IR and TG-FTIR.