LANL and Jenike & Johanson Collaboration Improves Biorefinery Reliability

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Energy dot gov Office of Energy Efficiency and renewable energy

Bioenergy Technologies Office


March 24, 2021

LANL and Jenike & Johanson Collaboration Improves Biorefinery Reliability

image of LANL Smart Chute technology

Wire diagram of Smart Chutes demonstrating the innovative functionality to redirect biomass material having high-moisture content. Image credit: Jenike & Johanson

Strengthening the economic viability of biorefineries is critical to addressing climate change by decreasing the use of fossil fuels and mitigating carbon dioxide emissions. To that end, a collaboration between Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and Jenike & Johanson, a bulk solids storage company, funded by the Bioenergy Technologies Office's Feedstock-Conversion Interface Consortium, has developed a new technology called Smart Transfer Chutes. This application uses integrated acoustic moisture sensors to greatly improve the operational reliability of biorefineries.

Using “smart” chute technology, the acoustic sensor will signal if the feedstock is too wet to process and will redirect it to be further dried. This breakthrough could help reduce biofuel production costs, making them more cost-competitive.

Read more about Smart Transfer Chutes.