SUNY Cobleskill gasifier wins $5.8M grant to reduce wildfires

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COBLESKILL, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection awarded $5.8 million to the State University of New York at Cobleskill for its gasifier project, which turns combustible waste into a sustainable, clean-burning fuel.

The grant supports creating a mobile unit to complement wildfire reduction efforts by converting woody biomass. The unit processes about a ton of wood an hour to generates biofuels, biopower, and biochar.

The mobile unit uses Visiting Assistant Professor David Waage’s inclined rotary gasifier, green technology that transforms excess or “waste” material into an accessible fuel source. Waage also leads the grant project.

“The invention and development of the rotary gasifier right here on our campus encapsulates SUNY Cobleskill’s mission to grow, to sustain, and to renew our world and its citizens … We are proud of Professor David Waage for imagining the possibilities of a cleaner, more sustainable world, and taking action to develop this advanced technology with enormous potential.”

Marion A. Terenzio
SUNY COBLESKILL PRESIDENT

Gasifier technolgoy has several potential domestic, community, and military uses. Its technical innovations are cleaner, more efficient, and more convenient than predecessor models. It turns almost any combustible material in gaseous and/or liquid fuel. The machine produces enough fuel per day to power about 50 homes.

From a fire and forest management perspective, the mobile gasifier would repurpose kindling or flammable underbrush into a power source that’s easy to use.

Initially funded by the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Defense in 2008, the patended gasifier can easily be deployed at any site.

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