Mainstream Engineering Awarded Grant from the Department of Energy for Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Food Waste

ROCKLEDGE, FL — February 9, 2018 —  Turing food waste into fuel is not just something out of the movie Back to the Future III, it is a reality.  Mainstream Engineering Corporation, a 32-year-old Brevard County research and manufacturing company, has been awarded a grant from the Department of Energy to demonstrate their reactor for hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) of food waste and remediation of the aqueous byproducts.

The development of a sustainable waste-to-fuel technology is essential to simultaneously address two emerging national concerns: preserving the environment and reducing dependence upon non-renewable energy sources. More than 15 million tons of food waste are generated annually in the US, 92% of which is discarded in landfills. HTL is capable of converting these wet food wastes into energy-dense bio-oil. However, the current HTL process produces a substantial amount of wastewater which must undergo expensive post-treatments before disposal, making the process totally impractical and uneconomical.  However, Mainstream has developed a technology that resolves these issues making HTL both practical and economical.  This DOE funding will allow Mainstream’s advanced technology to be demonstrated.  In addition to food waste, this technology can be used for cleaning up organic mater from streams, rivers and lakes – Converting unwanted muck, grasses and other  organic material into fuel, a Win-Win that does not require landfills.

About Mainstream Engineering Corporation
Mainstream Engineering Corporation is a solutions-oriented research, development and manufacturing small business founded in 1986. Our primary mission is to transition advanced thermal control and energy conversion technology into high-quality and cost-effective commercial products. Military products include lightweight diesel/JP8-fueled electric generators, environmental control units and refrigerators/freezers for shipping containers. Commercial products include the QwikProduct line for heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC/R) technicians, details of which can be found at Areas of expertise include thermal control, energy conversion, turbomachinery, power electronics, renewable energy, chemical technology and materials science.