Next Fuel has put together an impressive package of clean, energy industry technologies (including renewable, water remediation, and some truly innovative stuff), with their flagship Coal-to-Gas (CTG) solution offering the massive global energy market that is saturated with lower-grade coal, lignite, and oil shale, a way to wring maximum energy point value from resources otherwise not quite so appealing from a development standpoint.
With as much as 40% of natural gas reserves on earth being biogenic (methane), the proprietary enhancement and patent-pending delivery method developed by NXFI for supercharging the natural microbial breakdown of coal (via increasing bioavailability of the compounds that increase natural gas-producing microbial activity), looks like a sure-fire winner for cooking-down those abundant low-grade coal resources into profitable energy outputs. With the CTG technology having cleared lab and field testing successfully, full-scale implementations are in the works in key locations around the world (successful smaller-scale pilot implementation in Indonesia in 2011), with China being a prime example and the ongoing activity in Australia, Canada, and Indonesia all being notable examples of prime target markets/locations under development (each area is rich in appropriate coals, including lignite, and commercialization efforts are underway).
The recent receipt of initial revenues ($160k in license fees and payments for the initial multi-well testing units at the site in Inner Mongolia) from the License Agreement signed in early 2012 with NXFI’s partner in China shows the beginning of what could be an extensible solution for harnessing China’s abundant low-grade coal. The power of the company’s system to convert low-grade coals like lignite (or brown coal) through an acceleration of the natural microbial conversion process, by combining a nutrient-rich stimulus package with a low-pressure pumping system (which results in optimal dispersion as well, yielding maximum contact between microorganisms and coal compounds), has the potential to see worldwide adoptance as all those low-grade coal deposits suddenly become very attractive.
Another reason leading to the attractiveness of this particular NXFI technology is that the underlying process is quite easy to implement and hands-off in terms of production, the units simply pump in catalyzing agents, resulting in coal that would otherwise produce little or no gas, being then able to produce profitably. NXFI plans to drill additional units later in 2012 at their operation with Future Fuel in China, and nutrient injection is currently underway there at existing units. Significant commercial quantities of methane are projected and evaluation of new unit locations is proceeding apace.
Next Fuel’s Carbon Dioxide to Product (CTP) technology is a parallel and very attractive piece of IP the company has acquired, with profound potential impact for power plants and fossil fuel burning in general, as the technology is able to not only convert (biochemically consume) carbon dioxide into value-added organic compounds, but sequester carbon in a solid form while doing so. Revenue from commercialization of this technology would be coming in from power plants and the end product sales as well, and while the technology is still nascent, its revenue potential in the rapidly emerging carbon footprint elimination area is considerable, as is its ability to close the carbon loop.
Another new asset in the portfolio assembled by NXFI (and again dovetailing exceptionally well with the company’s energy sector focus), is the Low Energy-input Pervaporation (LPV) technology that promises to deliver a robust, environmentally sound solution to the growing problem of water quality and reclamation processing in the burgeoning domestic oil & gas sector. With hugely successful fracking being a leading contributor to the problem, this new technology offers industry operators a cheap, effective way to address the waste water issue in an environmentally sound fashion that will keep companies abreast of increasingly stringent environmental regulations by government. While not an immediate source of anticipated revenue for 2012, the promise of this cost-effective (less than $0.3/barrel) means of treating recalcitrant produced water, increasing backflow from fracking, is immense and needs to be understood in terms of the company’s growth potential for shareholders.
Ever since the success of the 2011 operation in Indonesia where NXFI showed the world that their CTG technology can produce substantial, commercially viable amounts of biogenic natural gas from virgin lignite deposits that had no previous gas production, it has only been a matter of time before investors woke up to the alarm bells that this technology is ringing around the world. As Next Fuel moves to commercialize CTG in particular going forward, the company has made a point to continue to pay close attention to the up and coming technologies under the company’s belt. With the potential to develop towards biological fuel cell technologies and their aggressive attitude towards acquiring new technologies for the portfolio, NXFI is really making a name for itself in the markets as a rising star with the ability to put together compelling clean energy opportunities.
For more information on Next Fuel, or to learn more about the latest developments, please visit the company’s website at: www.Next-Fuel.com
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