May 30th 2016

Project wins prestigious Energy Globe Award with MCI technology

Coveted 2016 ‘Energy Globe Vorarlberg’ goes to Hatlerdorf bioenergy plant – innovative biochar gasification technology developed at MCI is heart of the system - competent implementation by MCI spin-off SynCraft - energy technology and climate protection: successful research fields at MCI

Energy pioneers Bernhard and Tobias Ilg were honored for their commitment to a sustainable energy supply with the 2016 Energy Globe Vorarlberg. A major contribution to their success was made by a biochar wood gas power plant which is based on technology developed at MCI.
Since 2002 the Ilg brothers operate the Hatlerdorf bioenergy plant in Dornbirn, a heating plant with associated heating network. They provide 250 properties with heat, which is obtained 100 percent from renewable energy sources. The biomass for heating comes entirely from regional production. The core of the heating plant is a fluidized bed gasifier, which, through a gasification process, converts wood into electricity and heat. A residual product that results from this process is high-quality biochar, which is used to improve farmland and returned to the natural cycle. The plant is the second of this type in Europe in successful live operation and reliably producing electricity. "The system is the heart of our company. Our goal is to keep efficiency as high as possible and not to let any energy go to waste", says Tobias Ilg. "We are happy to have the MCI spin-off SynCraft as a highly skilled and like-minded partner on our side."

While the plant in Dornbirn operates on the basis of wood chips, MCI is already focusing on further developing the technology towards the use of alternative biogenic resources (ABR) as an energy source, such as waste wood, sewage sludge, shrub cuttings or digestate from biogas plants. These raw materials are a key factor in the implementation of a global energy revolution. The thermochemical conversion process by stepped fluid bed gasification developed already in 2007 by the Environmental, Process & Energy Engineering department at MCI provides the optimal technological basis for a decentralized and efficient conversion of these resources into electricity and heat. The MCI spin-off SynCraft Engineering, which emerged from these research activities, is now developing, designing and building ultramodern wood gas power plants in all of Europe, such as the one in use at the winner of the Vorarlberg Innovation Award. MCI research project manager and SynCraft CEO Marcel Huber is understandably proud: "With our, in terms of raw material, flexible and highly efficient biomass cogeneration plants, our research makes an important contribution to energy autonomy. We are happy this is recognized – and we congratulate Bernhard and Tobias Ilg on the 2016 Energy Globe Award"

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