Biogenic Silica Solutions
The patented Laine Process uses biogenic silica including rice hull ash (RHA), sugar cane (bagasse) ash, corn stover ash, and other combusted biomass wastes. This ash production is frequently coincident with electric power generation.
The Laine Process saves six tons of CO for each ton of material produced, while reducing heavy metals, solvents, and other toxic waste streams.
Biogenic Silica materials produced by the Laine Process are substantially less expensive than equivalent traditionally produced silica materials.
Professor Richard Laine, PhD., developer of the Laine Process, won the EPA's 2023 Green Chemistry Challenge Award in the Academic category. According to the EPA citation:
Professor Richard Laine from the University of Michigan is being recognized for developing multiple ways to refine agricultural waste into silica-based intermediates, which may be used in materials like lithium-ion batteries and lithium supercapacitors. Millions of tons of agricultural waste (e.g., rice hulls) are burned for fuel every year in the U.S. and worldwide. The resulting rice hull ash is a material containing large amounts of silica and relatively few impurities. Currently, silicon metal is typically produced by heating quartz with a carbon source such as coal. The process developed by Professor Laine operates at lower temperatures, requires less energy and emits less carbon than the current methods.