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Interview with Ener-Core CEO Alain Castro

Interview with Ener-Core CEO Alain Castro

Edward Dodge spoke with Ener-Core CEO Alain Castro (edited for length and clarity).   ED: Hello Alain, let’s start off with how you present a compelling case for Ener-Core? AC: There is a shocking comment I like to make that gets people’s attention at cocktail parties. I like to say that air pollution is not a problem, period, it is a symptom. By this I mean industrial air pollution specifically, which is responsible for 36% of global greenhouse emissions. Air pollution is a symptom of industrial inefficiency. If an industry is 100% efficient it will waste nothing. But industrial air pollution is happening, and the public has responded to that and as a result you have all these environmental ministries, like the EPA in the US, roll out new policies to control emissions and those policies gave birth to an entire new industry called emissions destruction. There are hundreds of emissions destruction solutions out there. But emissions destruction is not a solution, it just makes the underlying problem seem less apparent. So if you can hone in on the underlying problem of inefficiency then it makes financial sense because it makes the firm more competitive and the air pollution just magically disappears. ED: The corollary that I use is that nature is a zero-waste system, every output in nature feeds the next input and industrial capitalism needs to evolve to a zero waste system where every output is used to feed some new process and then pollution just goes away. No waste means no pollution. AC: Yes, I have often said that we need to learn from nature in...
Ener-Core to install system at California landfill

Ener-Core to install system at California landfill

Renewable Energy From Waste reported on Ener-Core’s latest project which will demonstrate the conversion of low-quality gas to energy at a closed landfill. REW Staff June 2, 2015  Ener-Core Inc., an Irvine, California-based firm that designs, develops and manufactures products based on power oxidization technologies, has announced plans to install a 250kW Powerstation EC250 at a landfill in Orange County, California. When operational, the system will allow Orange County Waste & Recycling to generate clean electricity from a gas that is currently being flared at the landfill, which has been inactive since 1996. The installation is part of a renewable energy project made possible by the California Energy Commission awarding $1.5 million to the University of California, Irvine’s Advanced Power & Energy Program (APEP) in January 2015. The project is in line with APEP’s mission to foster strategic alliances to facilitate the development and deployment of environmentally sensitive, sustainable power generation and energy conversion. The project also was approved by the Orange County Board of Supervisors. Read the rest here…...
Reducing Waste Gas Emissions with Ener-Core’s Power Oxidizer

Reducing Waste Gas Emissions with Ener-Core’s Power Oxidizer

Gas flares are a potent symbol of modern society’s wasteful ways, whether in oil fields, landfills, or industry, these gases are vented and burned off because they have low fuel value or the infrastructure does not exist to properly manage them. All these wasted gases form air pollution and contribute significantly to global warming. Ener-Core is helping to address this problem of methane and waste gas emissions through the deployment of its new Power Oxidizer product line. The Power Oxidizer is a unique new technology that can utilize low-BTU gases that are usually flared or vented to produce electric power. Gases are wasted when they have a low methane content and cannot be utilized in a conventional engine or turbine to produce heat and power. Ener-Core’s patented Power Oxidizer technology can utilize gas with very low fuel value, down to 1.5% methane, to produce power. Since these gases cannot be effectively combusted, Ener-Core uses an alternative approach, gradual oxidation, to produce heat and power. Oxidation is the natural process of molecules reacting with oxygen and breaking down that normally takes place over a period of weeks or years. The Power Oxidizer accelerates this process into a few seconds where it generates usable heat which is then used to drive a turbine and make power. The potential applications for this new technology are enormous. Currently Ener-Core is targeting markets for digesters (including waste water treatment), landfills, coal mines, oil and gas operations, manufacturing, food processing, chemicals and ethanol plants. Anywhere there is flaring of waste gases is a potential application of the Power Oxidizer. The EPA estimates that 480 billion...