Evolution of High Temperature Gasification Technology

Realizing the need for a viable alternative to inefficient and environmentally harmful landfills and other traditional forms of waste disposal, a group of distinguished scientists and engineers gathered in the mid-1980s to develop the next generation of waste processing technology. These industry professionals focused their attention on high-temperature gasification, a technology in existence for 100 years that had been used for many industrial and commercial applications. Their genius was in combining existing and proven technologies into a groundbreaking process—a patented new way to process waste.


After a period of intense research and development, this innovative process went through years of extensive testing. A 110-ton per day demonstration facility was constructed in Fondotoce, Italy where research was performed by a variety of universities, technical institutes, and independent laboratories. After a detailed government testing and monitoring program, the facility received its commercial license in 1994.


Here is a chronological review of the development of Thermoselect technology:

  • 1985: Review of all existing technologies. Basic laboratory and analytical studies performed.
  • 1989: Study of the carbonization process versus pressure, temperature, time and waste properties (22 pounds per hour).
  • 1990: Study of waste compaction, pyrolysis, gasification and gas cleaning (550 pounds per hour).
  • 1991: Development of the process using various compaction presses, constant pressure and temperature pyrolysis chambers up to 60 feet in length and 2.5 square feet in crosssection area, study of the gasification process and refractory lining behavior, development of an oxygen lance design ensuring both safety and a quick-change feature, material stability, measurement methods and product quality (2,200 pounds per hour), development of an overall concept for a commercial scale pilot plant and preparation of implementation specifications (4.6 tons per hour).
  • 1991: September: Begin Fondotoce plant construction.
  • 1992: Installation of major equipment completed. Experimentation on melt stability and extraction point location, study of safety systems, study of input and output volumes, feed control, study of interface stability between press and channel, channel and high temperature reactor, and high temperature reactor and cooling chamber, continuous operation and effects of load variations, optimization of a gas purification system and of the gas engine operation.
  • 1993: January: Beginning of an evaluation program by Italian, Swiss and German experts.
  • 1993: April: Dismantling of major components after 4,000 hours of operation and inspection by independent experts instructed to study the stability and dependability of processing assemblies.
  • 1993: November: End of a 12-month trial period, including tests on a 1.2 Mw synthesis gas fired engine.
  • 1993: December: Extrapolation of demonstration plant results and findings to commercial scale plant.
  • 1994: A commercial operating license is granted to the Fondotoce plant. Extensive testing and measurement of the characteristics of the synthesis gas, the exhaust from the gas engine and the products of the process.
  • 1994-1998: Operation, testing and monitoring of the Fondotoce facility.
  • 1999 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Karlsruhe, Germany facility.
  • 1999 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Chiba, Japan facility.
  • 2003 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Mutsu, Japan facility.
  • 2005 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Tokoshima, Japan facility.
  • 2005 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Yorii, Japan facility.
  • 2005 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Nagasaki, Japan facility.
  • 2005 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Kurashiki, Japan facility.
  • 2006 - Startup and Commercial Operation of the Izumi, Japan facility.


•  How it Works

  Utilization of Outputs

•  Benefits