1999 Progress Report: The Manufacture of Carbon Black from Oils Derived from Scrap TiresEPA Contract Number: 68D98117
Title: The Manufacture of Carbon Black from Oils Derived from Scrap Tires
Investigators: Wojtowicz, Marek
Small Business: Advanced Fuel Research Inc.
Project Period: September 1, 1998 through March 1, 1999
Project Period Covered by this Report: September 1, 1998 through March 1, 1999
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (1998) RFA Text | Recipients Lists
Research Category: Hazardous Waste/Remediation , SBIR - Waste , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)
Description:This project addresses the reprocessing of oils derived from waste-tire pyrolysis into carbon black, a valuable feedstock for the manufacture of tires, other rubber products, paints, pigments, ink, powder coating, toner, and more. Such a process would form a recycling loop for the carbon black recovered from waste tires. Tire pyrolysis plants have been in operation for several years, but the economics are poor. This is due to the low value of the end products, which are usually fuels (e.g., oil, pyrolysis gas, char). Reprocessing of waste tires into value-added products would improve the economic leverage. The overall objective of the project is to develop a process for producing carbon black from tire pyrolysis oil. The Phase I objective, to demonstrate the feasibility of making carbon black of acceptable quality, was successfully accomplished, with American Society for Testing and Materials-grade carbon blacks produced. The Phase II objectives are to optimize product quality, as a function of process conditions and reactor design, and to advance the process to a pilot scale (Phase II option). This will be accomplished in the following tasks: (1) design and construction of a laboratory demonstration unit, (2) process optimization, (3) product analysis and process assessment, and (4) pilot-scale testing (Phase II option).
The proposed research, if successful, should result in a process that would allow for the recycling of a huge stream of solid waste, the majority of which currently ends up in a landfill. The recovered carbon black would be reused mainly in tire manufacturing, which is a large-volume industry. The proposed technology should provide a strong boost for the tire pyrolysis plants that have suffered from poor process economics. The process involves only a few modifications in the existing state-of-the-art (carbon black furnace process), the main innovations being the substitution of tire pyrolysis oil for the traditional petroleum feedstocks and the processing of the oils to high-value products. For these reasons, the new technology is gaining acceptance within the industry, although the properties of the carbon black products as a function of process conditions and reactor design still need to be determined.