An emerging force in the plasma technology sector
PyroGenesis has successfully shifted from a focus on research and development, to commercializing their line of plasma processes, as seen through their assorted list of commercial clients which includes the US Navy and Air Force, as well as other clients in Asia, Europe, Canada and the United States. The Company’s diversification within five major industries presents an attainable market size of $14.3+ billion, which leaves much room for PyroGenesis to expand its $5.8MM revenue base.
I love plasma-based technologies because I believe they are to provide significant solutions to carbon pollution.
There are four states of matter: solid, liquid, gaseous and plasma. Plasma is the state of matter that kept Captain Pickard preoccupied, as plasma is the most abundant form of ordinary matter in the Universe.
The sun is made up of plasma with inside temperature reaching 10,000,000 degrees Celsius. There is plasma in lightning strikes and in Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis).
Examples of man-made plasma include the light produced by a neon tube, as well as plasma cutting systems used to slice through metal. Thermal plasma can readily reach temperatures in excess of 10,000 degrees Celsius.
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But more importantly I think small-scale plasma technologies have the potential to become the next ‘mastery of fire’ in the history of humankind.
Case in point, recently we covered a business arrangement between PyroGenesis and Uragold (TSXV: UBR). PyroGenesis has granted Uragold a worldwide exclusive right to the usage of the PUREVAP ™ Quartz Vaporization Reactor technology, in return for 10% of sales, with set minimums, as royalty payments. The exclusivity is limited to the transformation of quartz covered by the provisional patent. The “PUREVAP ™ Quartz Vaporization Reactor is a proprietary process that uses a plasma arc within a vacuum furnace. This unique technology should allow Uragold to convert its world-class Quartz Projects into the highest purity, lowest cost supplier of Solar Grade Silicon Metal and Polysilicon to the solar industry. We expect the technology to reduce the energy footprint of solar cells significantly, bringing solar energy to grid parity, the point in time where the cost of solar power is equivalent to the blended cost of power on the electrical distribution grid.
Since 1991, PyroGenesis has steadily established itself as a leading firm in the design, development, manufacturing and commercialization of advanced plasma processes. The company provides engineering and manufacturing expertise, cutting-edge contract research, as well as turnkey process equipment packages to the defense, metallurgical, mining, advanced materials, oil & gas, and environmental industries. They develop and manufacture innovative plasma torches, waste processes, high-temperature metallurgical processes, and engineering services to the global marketplace.
According to the company’s website PyroGenesis engineers, scientists and technicians harnesses the unique properties of thermal plasma to melt and transform metal, to carry out high temperature chemical reactions and to convert waste into energy. The latter point excites me the most as small scale plasma technologies has been the most significant factor preventing the deployment of coal to liquid technologies through the Fisher-Tropsch process. Historically the Fisher-Tropsch process has depended on high temperature, high-pressure plasma that required huge CAPEX to implement. PyroGenesis’ PUREVAP process suggests that we might be able to scale down the Fisher-Tropsch process to the small scale. This would mean that ultimately we could get rid of our landfill problem.
Dr. Luc C. Duchesne is a Speaker and Author with a PhD in Biochemistry. With three decades of scientific and business experience, he has published ... <Read more about Dr. Luc Duchesne>