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Brazilian Company Makes Biodiesel with Microwave Technology

The new method reduces costs and allows use of ethanol in biodiesel production.

Renewable fuel technologies are constantly changing, especially in the infancy of this industry. Now come wire reports of a Brazilian company that will use microwave energy to produce biodiesel and cut local production costs by up to 40%.

The company - Intech Engenharia & Meio Ambiente - spent more than $460,000 to develop the local technology. Using the microwave approach, according to a wire service report, can reduce production costs for biodiesel from any type of oil. The technique allows use of ethanol, versus methanol, in the biodiesel-making process. Ethanol is plentiful in Brazil.

The company will have its first installation running in a chicken meatpacking plant. Within 30 days after the process is up and running, the company says the meatpacker will have the biodiesel facility at full industrial capacity. The plant would produce about 200 liters of biodiesel per hour, or about 2 million liters per year.

Rising concern over feeding animal fat in rations has packers looking for ways to turn the byproduct to other uses.

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