Wood Gasification…Electricity, Heat…CAR FUEL?

February 16, 2010

woodgascar-thumb-550x410-32635-1This awesome Volvo has been adapted by a fellow named Dutch John.  Believe it or not, but if one were to load up that silver apparatus on the back with burning wood chips, this car could run for 60 miles off the fumes.  That’s about the range for an electric car that you’d buy off a lot nowadays.

Wood gasification sounds like a fancy technique, but this process has been used to create fuel since before WWII–people get creative during dire energy shortages.  The chips in the tank are burned up to about 2500 degrees Fahrenheit…so we don’t recommend you install it beneath the seat.

Of course, this isn’t a green replacement for oil–cutting down trees for wood chips to power the billions of motorists around the planet doesn’t make a lot of sense.  But it’s a great real world example of how wood gasification works. One drawback of anaerobic digestion is that wood-based solids don’t go through the same biological reactions to bacteria as do, say, banana peels.  So wood gasification is an alternative method for us to ensure that  wood-based solids don’t end up cluttering our landfills.

If you’re really curious, check out this video on You Tube from the National Geographic show “Planet Mechanics.”  The intro discusses how to make a wood gas generator that could…theoretically…power your car.  We’re not suggesting you try this at home.

Planet Mechanics–Forget Horsepower, We’re Talking Tree Power

Harvest Power employs evolutionary gasification technology to convert wood waste and other feedstocks into renewable syngas ideal for producing electricity, heat, and substitute natural gas.  Find out more about why it’s an economically viable, affordable, and reasonable option here.


  1. Great invention I hope that nobody will burn and maybe you can make some BBQ in that car ;-)

  2. Jerry"G" says:

    Will Gasification work with a diesel engine ?

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