LPS enables rapid discovery of expertise and serves as a conduit between researchers, subject matter experts, investors and innovators by providing multi-faceted search capability across numerous technology areas and across the National Laboratories. Learn more about LPS.

This portal is meant to enable connection to U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) patents and experts, not to provide information about coronavirus or COVID-19. DO NOT contact the individuals and researchers included in LPS for general questions about COVID-19. For information about the virus, please visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website.

Innovation

Agriculture can create a lot of waste products. Tucumcari Bio-Energy has a vision of a synergistic integration of dairy farming, feedlots, municipal waste, biofuel production, and greenhouse farming that would address this issue. As a first step, the company intends to build a high-efficiency biomethane processing facility by reconfiguring an ethanol plant in New Mexico. This facility will take animal manure and convert it to energy. It will also serve as a prototype for other highly efficient digester systems utilizing unused ethanol plants in the Midwest.

Technology Advancement

As Bob Hockaday and his team at Tucumcari Bio-Energy made plans, they soon learned that the process used to convert manure to energy suffered from various instabilities. Tucumcari Bio-Energy turned to NMSBA, which in turn connected the company with Sal Rodriguez at Sandia National Laboratories.

Rodriguez and his team worked to determine the optimum water-to-manure ratio to maximize energy conversion. Such a ratio minimizes instabilities, such as extreme temperatures, high alkalinity, or the plugging of anaerobic digestion tanks. To perform this analysis, Rodriguez and his team used advanced computational fluid dynamics and theoretical modeling, along with natural circulation dynamics.

Impact

Using the information resulting from this technical assistance, Tucumcari Bio-Energy was able to apply for loans to fund the conversion of the ethanol plant in Tucumcari. Once the plant is producing energy, the company anticipates a revenue stream of approximately $10 million per year and the creation of 20 new jobs.

Tucumcari Bio-Energy.JPG

Tucumcari Bio-Energy

Sandia National Laboratories |
Tucumcari Bio-Energy (Tucumcari NM)
Publication Date
Jul 1, 2017
Agreement Type
Other