High Performance Products for Poultry Biowaste ProcessingEPA Contract Number: EPD06027
Title: High Performance Products for Poultry Biowaste Processing
Investigators: Skinner, Richard D
Small Business: Production Specialties, Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Project Period: March 1, 2006 through August 31, 2006
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2006) RFA Text | Recipients Lists
Research Category: Biology/Life Sciences , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , SBIR - Animal Waste and Waste to Energy
Surface water quality impacts associated with intensive, large-scale poultry production are significant and pervasive in many parts of the country. Production Specialties, Inc. has developed process technology for converting waste (poultry litter and manure) into commercial energy and chemical products. Although major technical problems have been successfully resolved, economic performance of a commercial-scale processing facility remains an issue and will be assessed in the commercial-scale demonstration project that currently is underway. To ensure commercial development of the process technology, all opportunities for making high or higher value products must be pursued. Production of high-purity lignin streams that can be used as an asphalt additive and impart improved performance and increased product lifetime to petroleum asphalt products represents such an opportunity.
Petroleum asphalt consumption in the United States amounts to approximately, 30 million tons annually for roadway construction and maintenance. Extending the life of asphalt roads could have significant positive impact on U.S. petroleum consumption and the federal budget. The problem will be addressed by separating a natural, complex biopolymer from selected biomass feedstocks. The biopolymer will be used in asphalt formulations and evaluated for its performance as an antioxidant in standard laboratory tests for asphalt. Small quantities of biomass materials (including agricultural residues) will be processed to generate “pound” quantities of refined lignocellullose additive material. This additive material will be blended with two candidate petroleum asphalt feedstocks to produce sample materials for laboratory evaluation (binder tests), which will be used to project asphalt pavement performance and life span. Successful development and deployment of this technology will allow biomass-derived products to displace effectively about 3 million tons of petroleum currently used for asphalt formulation annually in the United States. The maintenance for asphalt roadways could be reduced by one-third, saving U.S. taxpayers approximately $2 billion annually. The creation of this product and development of this market will benefit biorefineries by improving their economic viability and expanding their product slate to include a value-added product that will be accepted readily into existing markets. In addition, the balance of trade would be improved by as much as $600 million due the amount of foreign oil, displaced by biomass-derived products. Successful development of the proposed technology will allow indigenous renewable resources to displace approximately 3 million tons of petroleum products and create a market for poultry waste processing products.