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Vega Biofuels releases extensive evaluation report conducted on its bio-coal product

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World Coal,

Vega Biofuels Inc. has announced a successful evaluation of the Vega Biofuels Inc.’s bio-coal product was recently completed by Western Research Institute at the request of a large domestic utility company.

The results confirmed that the product can be used to replace traditional coal in coal-fired power plants. Bio-coal is a renewable energy product made from timber waste using unique technology called torrefaction. Torrefaction is the treatment of biomass at high temperatures under low oxygen conditions.

Vega Biofuels recently announced that the company filed a Provisional Patent Application with the US Patent and Trademark Office under the title "Method and Apparatus for Torrefying Biomass". The application disclosure relates generally to wood used as a fuel source, and more particularly to systems, methods, and devices for torrefying biomass, such as wood or other agricultural biomass.

The "Biomass Combustion Evaluation Report" was done to evaluate whether or not Vega's bio-coal can be used as a replacement for traditional coal. Western Research Institute, located in Laramie, Wyoming, conducted the tests using two versions of Vega's bio-coal. The first product was torrefied at 300°C and the second at 450°C. The testing results indicated that the product produced at 300°C performed successfully when compared to Powder River Basin coal.

The torrefaction process converts timber into a renewable energy alternative to traditional coal for utility owned pulverised coal-fired power plants around the world. Torrefaction is a partial carbonisation process created at temperatures between 475 – 575°F (200 – 400°C) in a low oxygen environment. The physical and energetic properties of the biomass are then much more comparable to conventional coal. Bio-coal has a high-energy density of up to 13 000 BTUs/Lb and is considered a renewable energy fuel that meets the Renewable Portfolio Standards and Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) in the US. Existing coal-fired power plants can use the bio-coal without making significant changes to their current infrastructure.

"This is very good news for our company. The extensive evaluation performed by Western Research Institute confirms what we've been saying all along, that our bio-coal can replace traditional coal and help keep coal-fired power plants open and save the jobs for those that would be lost when these power plants are shuttered. We feel that our product is the best solution for the future of these plants. They can utilise our product with very little retrofitting, stated Michael K. Molen, Chairman and CEO of Vega Biofuels.

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