Fuel Development,
Processing, & Production
International Alternative Fuel
Technology Center (IAFTC) Home

image of Fuel Upgrading Demonstration Plant

Fuel Upgrading Demonstration Plant

The scientists and engineers at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) have extensive experience in the development and production of both fossil fuels and alternative fuels. This experience, coupled with state-of-the art production and laboratory facilities, gives SwRI unique capabilities to meet its clients’ process development needs. Areas of specialization include:

Developing renewable fuel sources is becoming increasingly important to stem problems associated with fossil fuels and their effects on pollution and the overall global environment. Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) has extensive experience in preparing and analyzing conventional and alternative fuels, fluids and lubricants. Finding, producing, and transporting fossil fuels; developing and assessing alternative sources; and cleaning up energy byproducts remain core programs. Blends of field experience, engineering and chemical skills, and design and fabrication capabilities at SwRI offer an interdisciplinary approach to fuel-related services.

Animal Fats & Plant Oils

IAFTC laboratories can derive HRJ and green diesel renewable fuels made from animal fat (beef tallow) and also from the oil of plants such as:

  • Algae
  • Soybeans
  • Canola

Clean-Burning Alternative Fuel

Biodiesel is a renewable fuel made from the oils of plants such as algae, soybeans, canola and palm, as well as from animal fats. Biodiesel is typically blended with petroleum-based diesel fuels and is non-toxic and biodegradable. Biodiesel is a clean-burning alternative fuel that offers several advantages over conventional diesel fuel, including:

  • Decreased smog-forming potential
  • Reduced sulfur emissions
  • Biodegradable and nontoxic characteristics
  • Reduced dependence on foreign oil

In addition to evaluating conventional and other alternative fuels, SwRI has extensive capabilities for analyzing biodiesel and biodiesel blends.

SwRI's modern and extensive facilities are equipped to perform analytical requirements for biodiesel fuels according to ASTM D6751.

Related Terminology

fuel development  •  fuel processing  •  fuel production  •  renewable fuel  •  biodiesel diesel  •  fuel additive  •  emissions characterization  •  emissions testing  •  greenhouse gases  •  fossil fuels  •  fuel technology  •  fuel economy  •  clean-burning fuel  •  vegetable oil fuel  •  animal fat fuel  •  plant oil fuel

International Alternative Fuel Technology Center (IAFTC), iaftc.swri.org
Robert Burrahm, Assistant Director, Office of Automotive Engineering, 210-522-3064, alt-fuels@swri.org

Benefiting government, industry and the public through innovative science and technology
Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®), headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, is a multidisciplinary, independent, nonprofit, applied engineering and physical sciences research and development organization with 9 technical divisions.