VGRID FAQs

What is VGrid’s BIOSERVER?

VGrid’s innovative BIOSERVER is a mobile and scalable system for converting agricultural biowaste into clean electricity, as well as beneficial biochar and wood vinegar products. The BIOSERVER is a net negative carbon technology that reverses climate change by using nature’s carbon cycle to capture and transfer carbon from the atmosphere to the ground.

 

Specifically, VGrid employs a high-temperature gasification technology.  In addition to biochar and wood vinegar, this process produces a synthetic gas (syn gas) that is converted to clean, sustainable, on-demand, and 100% renewable electricity.

 

What is VGrid biochar?
The International Biochar Initiative (IBI) defines biochar, “Biochar is a solid material obtained from the carbonization thermochemical conversion of biomass in an oxygen-limited environment.” Biochar is like charcoal or activated carbon, but it is made from renewable biomass, not from harmful coal or coconut plantations. 

 

How does VGrid’s technology help to address climate change and improve the environment overall?

VGrid benefits the environment in three primary ways. First, we create clean electricity that reduces the world’s reliance on dirty fossil fuels. Second, in our production of biochar, we take biowaste that would have otherwise released its carbon into the atmosphere and effectively sequester it for hundreds or even thousands of years. Third, the biochar (and wood vinegar) produced in the energy creation process has many eco-friendly applications which include …

  • Repairing damaged and depleted soils
  • Improving crop yields and livestock health
  • Filtering polluted stormwater runoff
  • Reducing the use of synthetic fertilizers and chemical pesticides
  • Limiting methane gas emissions from livestock
  • Mitigating drought and the risk of forest fire
  • Improving the effectiveness of many consumer products

How much CO2 is captured by VGrid’s BIOSERVER system?

VGrid recently conducted a comprehensive lifecycle analysis (LCA) that showed a net decrease of 13 tons of CO2 equivalent emissions for every ton of biochar created using V-Grid technology.  This makes VGrid one of the only carbon-negative energy sources on the planet … serving to not just slow climate change, but actually, reverse it!

 

What types of biomass can be used as inputs?

VGrid’s BIOSERVER will easily process most dense, small form factor materials like nutshells and wood pellets, chipped trees, etc. VGrid has also successfully tested other forms of biowaste including food waste, grass clippings, and corn cobs, as well as human and animal biowaste.

 

Does the VGrid BIOSERVER have any negative emissions?

The BIOSERVER’s emissions are minimal and well below even the most aggressive air quality standards.  Specifically, each unit’s annual emissions are below the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (SJVAPCD), Best Available Control Technology (BACT) thresholds.  Even though the BIOSERVER falls below BACT thresholds, the power generator sets include a 3-way catalyst to further control NOx, CO, and VOC emissions.

 

Does VGrid sell bulk biochar?

VGrid sells bulk wholesale biochar by the pound, super sack, ton, and truckload.  Additionally, VGrid offers the following innovative biochar-based products, including:

How is VGrid’s biochar different than other sources?

When comparing the conversion process of biomass to energy and biocarbon there are considerable advantages in favor of gasification (used by VGrid) over pyrolysis (used by others), including:

  • Energy Output:  Gases generated in VGrid’s BIOSERVER contain a significant quantity of syngas that can be converted to fuels or electricity.  Vapors generated during pyrolysis have excess CO2 and low heating value.
  • Efficiency:  Once the gasification process starts, it requires significantly less energy to maintain the conversion process.  Pyrolysis on the other hand requires constant energy to heat the biomass and destruct it.
  • Biochar Characteristics:  VGrid’s gasification process produces biochar with higher surface area and porosity compared to pyrolysis.  Additionally, VGrid biochar contains less ash and residual organic compounds.