Source: Sandia National Laboratories
Date: 7/1/95    Record No.: 10162
Contact: Stuart Purvis, 505-845-8392; Al Sylwester, 505-844-8151

The technology makes it possible to convert low grade hydrocarbon feedstocks (or fossil fuels) directly into Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide (separate product streams!) while sequestering impurities, even producing elemental sulfur. There is no stack, and no emissions.

Ashland wants this technology for its refineries, to deal with the sour crude it often must buy, to produce hydrogen, and to handle refinery "bottoms," which are a costly disposal headache. As a Hydrogen producer, HYMELT is estimated to be 30% cheaper than steam reforming when using the same feedstock; i.e., fuel gas. It is cheaper still when a waste stream is used as the feedstock instead.

Ashland Oil has demonstrated proof of concept in their labs, and has funding committed for a production installation. What's missing is the piece in the middle--the intermediate scale demonstration R&D. Sandia is proposing to DOE/Fossil to fund the government side of a CRADA with Ashland, but with budget cuts, funds might not be available. Ashland has asked Sandia to look discretely for a partner interested in other fields of use, and who could put up $800k/year for 3 years, leveraging the many $ millions that Ashland has spent and committed.
[This information should be handled with discretion.]