Siemens to automate algae biofuels production | Automation.com

Siemens to automate algae biofuels production

December 8, 2009 - Renewed World Energies (RWE) selected Siemens Industry to automate its new Georgetown County, S.C., facility. Now in the pilot phase of development, the plant converts cultivated algae into oil used in diesel and jet fuels. RWE expects to attain full capacity by the end of 2010.

The control system includes a Simatic S7-300 controller programmed with Simatic process control system software, as well as Siemens Micromaster drives.

RWE President Richard Armstrong says the automation and control system will help the company meet growing national and international demands for alternative fuels. Additionally, RWE is incorporating a process that captures CO2 and nitrous oxide emissions from industrial smokestacks and then recycles the chemicals to enhance the algae growing process.

“We tested several other leading control system suppliers, and found that Siemens’ quality and value were superior,” says Armstrong. “Support was also a big part of the selection process. Siemens service was better by leaps and bounds. They have been instrumental in helping us program our automation processes, including graphics.”

Today, construction continues on the Georgetown plant’s photo bio reactors as well as a commercial processing cell comprised of 550 panels.

“RWE’s work transforming algae into diesel and jet fuels is at the leading edge of alternative fuels production technology,” says Rich Chmielewski, Siemens chemical and biofuels marketing manager. “Our partnership will not only help to bring these biofuels to market faster, but will continue to improve the production processes over time for greater efficiencies and impressive return on investment.”

About RWE:
Renewed World Energies is an algae oil company specializing in automated process, closed-loop bioreactors for harvesting of various algae strains used to produce non-food based oil for biodiesel. The company will utilize vertical growing panels and automated harvesting technology at the new facility.

About Siemens:
Siemens Industry, Inc. (SII) is the U.S. affiliate of Siemens’ global Industry Sector business. The Industry Sector includes six divisions: Building Technologies, Industry Automation, Industry Solutions, Mobility, Drive Technologies and OSRAM SYLVANIA. With nearly 222,000 Siemens Industry Sector employees worldwide, the Industry Sector posted a worldwide profit of $5.82 billion on revenues of $57 billion in fiscal 2008.
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