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06. Safe fragrances
05. DNA mass information store
04. Garden mounds for permaculture
03. Silver as high-tech material
02. Micro needle transmits medications and light
01. Electricity storage in gravity systems

12. An eye on space hazards
11. Water purification through freezing
10. Solar shingles
09. Trinary code
08. Vegetation-based battery materials
07. Indoor position location
06. The interface industry
05. Hypersonic aircraft
04. Re-usable glass packaging
03. Vein patterns as personal ID
02. Magnet making bacteria
01. Ultra-light solids

12. Ultrasound in water
11. Projected touchscreen
10. Electric airplane
08. Glass hard disc
04. Nuclear hazard
03. Clearing “sewer soap”
02. Water harvesting
01. Tea bag size personal water filter

12. Human powered water transport
11. The Technium
08. Bio-remediation of oil spills
07. Cleaner coal
05. Oil spill remediation
04. Solar towers
03. Brain-computer
02. Biodiesel producing bacteria
01. Hydrogen producing bacteria

12. Levitating living organisms
11. A new blue
10. Polymer magnets
09. Electric vehicle batteries
08. Implantable cancer monitors
07. Algal biofuel
06. Geo-Thermal Heat Pump
05. Battery powered roadster
04. Fenestration
03. Text to voice
02. Implantable ID chips
01. Air cleansing building material

12. ebooks
11. Energy Harvesting
10. Private space-flights
09. Virus identification chip
08. Bio-fuels
07. Electronic financial trading
06. Bio-remediation
05. New tech agriculture
04. Manufactured Hotels
03. Magnetic Induction
02. Genetic Vaults
01. Solid-state lighting

12 Bacteria in agriculture and industry
11. Blue revolution
10. Electronic nose
09. Nuclear sarcophagus
08. Shape shifting technology
07. Thought activated technology
06. Green is cool - make me look green
05. Electronic 'drugs'
04. Super-canals and super-ships
03. Environmentally friendly technology: greens versus grays
02. Agriculture: food,fiber and fuel
01. FPGA floating-point performance surpasses microprocessor

08. Energy sources for electricity compete
07. Universal interface (UI)
06. Magnetic levitation
05. Light pipes
04. Storage of electricity
03. Automotive engines
02. Molecular assembly
01. Introducing Technoscan Newsbriefs

Vol. 5, No. 7, July 31, 2010
ISSN 1932-3018

Cleaner coal
Positioning this technology in the
Functionality Grid
Reformatted from: Van Wyk, Rias J: Technology - A Unifying Code, 2004, SMG, Cape Town, p.34. Based on: Ropohl, Gunter: Eine Systemtheorie der Technik, 1979, Carl Hanser Verlag, Munich and Vienna, p.178.
This Newsbrief deals with a newprocess for coal-to-gasconversion that is cleaner than competing processes. Instead of burning coal the process superheats it. In terms of the Atlas of Technological Megatrends the technology is concerned with the combined functionalities of matter and energy processing.
In July 2010 Bixby Energy Systems in Minnesota announced that it had soldits "clean coal technology" to Chinese customers. The technology "is built around a series of interdependent patents and processes that allow for the thermal conversion of coal into solid liquid and gaseous products." Initial application could be the "creation of clean inexpensive natural gas for fueling industry and power plants" (St. Anthony, N.: 2010, "Chinese are firstcustomers for promising coal-to-gas technology", Star Tribune, July 2, p.D1).
At present the system is in the validation phase. It is available in modular form. A module that is 15 feet (about 5 meters) long 10 feet (about 3.3 meters) wide and 50 feet (about 16.7 meters) high can reportedly process 192 tons of coal a day and create enough electricity to run a turbine that would produce about 6.25 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 6000 US homes. The process eliminates the need for carbon capture and sequestration. It is said to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 66 percent.
In terms of NASA’s nine-point scale of technology readiness level (TRL), the system is at TRL 6. Successful validation would raise it to TRL 7.
Technology explorers should follow this technology as a further step in the pursuit of clean-coal technology. Many approaches have been announcedover the years, some initiated and some shelved.

© Rias J. van Wyk, 2013. Editor.