Aerospace Research Corporation
is known for innovation.
1980A: ARC became the
first company to advance the concept that wood can fuel large power plants more
efficiently than coal (USDOE, OSTI ID: 6659467). This is because with
coal, slagging occurs and ash removal can be a problem and with an ash content
about one-tenth that of coal, wood presents less problems than coal as an
1980B: In a project funded
by the US Department of Energy (USDOE), the ARC initiated a program to develop
biomass as an alternative fuel for gas turbines. Government reports (USDOE
OSTI ID: 5685622; DE91012129) concluded that the ARC system successfully
operated with delivery of power to the Tennessee Valley Authority. Emissions
meet or exceed EPA requirements with no erosion of the turbine detected in over
760 hours of operation. The system, was deemed by the USDOE to be ready for
development of a commercial version.
1988: Working under a
USDOE contract (AC06-76RL01830, PNL-6565), ARC demonstrated another
breakthrough; that with the development of a suitable combustor, manure can be
pulverized and fed into a gas turbine combustion system with the manure burning
in much the same manner as a liquid or gaseous fuel. Ash and dirt in the manure
did not appear to have a significant effect on combustion and were effectively
removed by the cyclone filters.