development and optimization of the process
After 10 years of Research, a biodiesel that meets the European standard NF-EN-14214 is biologically synthesized. Gecco’s biodiesel, made from Used Food Oil and bioethanol, is used without petrodiesel, hence its name “B100” (100% biodiesel).
In May 2019, Gecco finalizes the production unit and the installation on its new site in Avelin (59): the Hauts-de-France area is thus equipped with the first plant for upgrading edible oils into biodiesel with an ecological and innovative process, with a processing capacity of 1000 tonnes per year.
Gecco’s biodiesel is used to fuel public service vehicles in the cities of Lille, Charleville Mézières and the Communauté d’Agglomération de Béthune-Bruay Artois Lys Romane.
Morevoer, the BIOHEC-LIFE project has made it possible to develop a process for refining glycerol, which is extracted from used edible oils before their transformation into biodiesel. It enables to obtain a glycerol with a purity greater than 97%, which can be used for pharmaceutical, cosmetic, food or chemical preparations.
Research carried out on the Gecco biodiesel process made it possible to employ 2 research engineers, 2 post-docs, and an intern at the end of a master’s degree.
evolution of the prototype
Replication on a European scale
Between January and June 2017, PLS carried out research to determine the countries in which the BIOHEC-LIFE project could be replicated. The following elements have been taken into account :
- Deposits and availability on the different markets of Used Cooking Oils
- Legislative framework and policy for the production and use of biofuels
- Competition in the production chain
- Existence of structures or networks of (social) businesses capable of promoting the development of the activities offered by BIOHEC-LIFE
Following this market research, PLS and Rreuse identified and contacted potential partners across Europe. Unfortunately, none of these players has yet decided to sign a franchise agreement with Gecco.
Together, the partners have developed documentation to inform potential partners about the objectives of the project and the value of establishing a partnership with Gecco. In addition, PLS wrote a plea for municipal authorities in European cities. Indeed, their support is crucial to the replication of the BIOHEC-LIFE project.
Finally, Rreuse organized two events, in Athens (June 2018) and Bologna (May 2019). The goal was to present the project and get identified potential partners interested.
closing of the project
On June 11, 2021, after 4 years of partnership and European support, Gecco organizes the closing event of the BIOHEC-LIFE project. This day also marks the inauguration of the biodiesel production unit and waste treatment facilities.