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Home » Business News/Analysis, Feedstock, Feedstocks, Field Crops, Process, R & D Focus, Sustainability

Rising from the Ashes: Renewable Silica from Rice Husk Ash

Submitted by on September 7, 2017 – 11:49 amNo Comment

by Kapil Shyam Lokare (E2IG Solutions/Biofuels Digest)  At 758.8 million tonnes (503.6 million tonnes, milled basis), world paddy production in 2017 would stand 0.8 percent, or 5.8 million tons, above a revised estimate for 2016. The comparatively modest year-on-year increase mirrors constraints posed by tight margins and heightened competition with other crops, could entail a slow-down in the rate of area expansions ….

In countries where rice is a staple part of the diet, on average about 400 grams of rice per person, per day (for families, including children and adults) is consumed. That is intended for two meals that include other ingredients to ensure a minimum of 2,100 kilocalories per day.

On average 28% of the rice paddy is husk, giving an annual total global production of 212.5 million tonnes. The rice husk, also called rice hull, is the coating on a seed or grain of rice. It is formed from hard materials, including silica and lignin, which protect the seed. Each kilogram of milled white rice results in roughly 0.28 kg of rice husk as a by-product of rice production during milling.

The husk is used as fuel in the rice mills to generate steam for the parboiling process. In the majority of rice producing countries much of the husk produced from the processing of rice is either dumped as a waste or used as a fuel in the boilers for processing paddy, producing energy through direct combustion and/or by gasification. Rice husk briquettes and pellets are produced using densification to increase the density of materials and their combustion performance. These densified rice husks are mainly used in industrial boilers as a substitute for fossil fuel. Carbonized rice husk is sometimes produced by thermal decomposition of the rice husk under a limited supply of oxygen (O2) and at relatively low temperatures (less than 700 °C). Biochar produced from carbonization can be used as soil amendment, for processing fertilizer, and as activated carbon, etc.

E2iG Solutions Pvt. Ltd. and its partners has come up with the unique solution that could provide the best economic and environmental solution to this problem. The project is lead by Abhay Siddham of E2iG. We have successfully processed the RHA to high grade amorphous silica through our specially developed thermal reactor under controlled temperature. Based on the client requirements we can produce amorphous silica from 90 to 98 % concentration. The process adopted doesn’t use any chemical and thus no harmful discharge is generated (as that chemical distillation process).    READ MORE

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