Ionic Fuel Technology is a small public U.S. company (NASDAQ-IFTI) with a device that substantially increases the efficiency of any hydrocarbon fueled burner. This is proven, operational, commercial technology that can be used/retrofit with any boiler technology, regardless of/in addition to other (emissions control) equipment. To date, operations and sales have been almost entirely in the UK and Europe.
Payback is invariably less than 24 months, and sometimes as little as 6 months. In the case of rental, the customer sees a positive cash flow immediately.
They have not yet done a large utility boiler, although PowerGen is about to undertake a field test on a 250 tons (steam)/hr boiler. The only activity in the U.S. was an experiment with AES on a fluid bed pulverized coal (PC) plant which was not successful. In fact, PC remains a challenge for the company–they suspect the injected charge might be canceled by the intense electrostatic activity of the powdered coal.
The company originally applied the device on diesel engines, and was able to demonstrate 10% fuel savings. They weren’t able, however, to interest the diesel engine makers. The opportunity remains, and could be particularly useful for gen sets and locomotives. The company has a small unit that would be directly applicable.
After seeing a Sept. 2 press release, UFTO contacted the company’s chairman, Mr. Doug Johnston (New Canaan CT, 203-966-6004), and learned that IFT wants to identify a joint venture partner for the U.S.
The company does not have a website, but SEC filings are available on line, and the company can send an extensive information package. Current market capitalization is just over $5 Million, with the stock price under $1 from a high last year over $5.
The company announced on September 1 that Texaco successfully completed a long-term (2 year) evaluation of the system. The previously purchased unit was installed on one of seven boilers located at Texaco’s 180,000 barrel per day Pembroke Refinery in South West Wales. The Foster Wheeler boiler is rated at 175,000 pounds of steam per hour burning heavy fuel and refinery gas. The IFT system increased the boiler’s thermal efficiency by 4.5 percent resulting in fuel savings of the same magnitude. Additionally, annual emission of greenhouse gas (CO2) was reduced by 2,700 tons and nitrogen oxide (NOx) by over 6 tons. The reduction in “greenhouse gas” and NOx emissions contributes toward Texaco’s objective of progressively improving the refinery’s environmental performance.
IFT and BP Energy have signed a Business Alliance after successful tests at a BP Chemicals 250 tons/hr boiler in the UK. BP Energy has ordered a unit on behalf of a Scottish paper mill. The company also has agreements with a service and marketing firm in Belgium, a long term rental agreement with a brewer in Germany, and has received orders from BMW and a UK brewer. A large pharmaceutical company in the UK has been using an IFT system for more than a year.
The system does not involve water or steam injection, chemical injection or additive, or an electric or magnetic field.
—- (From the company’s 10-K) —-
The IFT System, which is attached to a customer’s heating or power generation equipment, produces negatively charged ions (“Ions”) by passing an air flow over a body of vibrating liquid and into the combustion chamber or air intake of the customer’s machinery. The ionized air supply accelerates the normal combustion process. As a result of the improved combustion, the amount of air and fuel supplied to the burner can be reduced while still maintaining a constant measure of power output. This reduction of air and fuel decreases fuel consumption as well as the production of NOX CO and CO2 and when burning fuel oil, fireside coking and particulate emissions are also reduced.
The IFT System is self contained in a cube-shaped metal cabinet. The System’s interior mechanism vibrates the surface of a liquid contained inside the cabinet. The vibrating liquid releases negatively charged Ions that are then delivered to the customer’s equipment through a connection placed either adjacent to the boiler’s combustion chamber or to the boiler’s air intake mechanism.
The System is available in eight sizes ranging from 15″ x 12″ x 16″ to 43″ x 3 1-5″ x 35″. Such sizes are suitable for boilers generating from approximately 1,000 lbs. of steam per hour to approximately 96,000 lbs. of steam per hour. Multiple Systems are used when either the boiler has more than one burner or the boiler’s power generating capacity exceeds the capacity of the largest IFT System. The System generally requires only a routine servicing every six months and may be leased or purchased.
Typical performance results of the System reveal a reduction in NOx. emissions [up to 6%], a reduction in CO emissions ranging from 6% to 80%, a reduction in CO2 emissions ranging from 2 1/2% to 7%, a reduction in particulate emissions ranging from 6% to 40% and a reduction in fuel consumption ranging from 2 1/2% to 7%. The exact performance of the System depends upon the customer’s existing equipment and desired objectives; customers may achieve less favorable results or no improvement if their equipment requires repair or if fuel and air flows cannot be closely controlled. If NOx and CO emissions have been reduced by the use of other equipment, the System may be used to reduce CO2 emissions and fuel consumption. CO2 emission reduction correlates directly with the fuel savings which the IFT System provides.