The process of producing diesel / fuel-like substances from waste plastic has by now been largely accepted with a number of varying but inefficient technologies coming to prominence over the last 15 years, some of which have been highlighted in the Press. However, it remains the case that despite a certain amount of exaggerated claims, no commeWRially viable technology has been developed to date that can process the majority of waste plastics into storage stable EN 590 diesel.
WRi with its ‘jv’ German partners have, after 11 years extensive research, developed a proven and unique process that will revolutionize plastics disposal, making this one of the more exciting discoveries of the 21st Century. The Company has a patented process whereby plastics are converted into EN590 diesel on a commeWRially viable basis. It is this particular breakthrough in the “plastics into diesel” technology that makes WRi such an exciting investment opportunity.
However, the WRi story begins with a new process that was developed in late 2004/early 2005 by Clyvia, a German based company. They developed, at significant cost, a process and procedure called depolymerisation. Put simply, this process “cracked” molten plastics and waste oils at the optimum temperature on a continuous basis to achieve an 85% to 95% yield per tonne depending on input material. They ran this process through a patented reactor from 2005 to late 2008, attaining during this time, independent validation from TUV Rhienland and German Customs and Excise.
In 2006 WRi’s CEO Sean Reilly decided to investigate this new technology and was so impressed that he decided to try and get an Exclusivity Agreement to operate the technology in the UK and Ireland. Sean Reilly formed WRi in 2008 and entered into talks with the management at Clyvia with a view to purchasing this equipment if it proved to be viable. The Company received assurances from Dr M Sappok (the reactor patent holder) that this system was indeed continuous and scalable. The system in place was allegedly processing 500 kilograms of plastic per hour producing 450 litres of EN590 diesel. The product was indeed diesel, but the figures per hour were not conclusive. We received further assurances from the management that the reactor volume could be increased if the dimensions were increased.
However under further scrutiny by WRi throughout 2008 and in conjunction with some members of the original Clyvia team it was found that, while this system was indeed a breakthrough, the patented reactor and cleaning system was neither scalable nor viable. Relations with Clyvia deteriorated and it became clear that the reactor developed by Clyvia could not be enlarged to produce a greater volume without compromising the quality and the rate of production. This in turn affected the commeWRial viability of the plant as a whole. After stress testing the figures needed to make this system commeWRially viable the figure agreed was a minimum of 750 litres per hour. Clearly the only answer was to develop a different reactor.