Can you imagine life without landfills? It seems unlikely, but what if we told you there is a company located in Westmoreland County that could make that idea a reality.
Westinghouse Plasma Corporation (WPC) might be a new tenant in Technology Park I, but the company’s plasma torches are a result of over 30 years of development. In the 1980’s WPC’s technology was initially developed in collaboration with NASA to simulate space vehicle re-entry conditions. Today, Westinghouse Plasma Corporation, a subsidiary of Harvest International New Energy Co., uses plasma torch technology for a variety of applications, including the gasification of municipal and hazardous waste. In countries where there are large populations, creating tons of waste daily, and little space for landfills, this technology offers a unique solution to their waste problem.
Waste to Energy: Plasma torches generate super-high heat (+3,000 degrees celsius) to transform solid waste into synthetic gas, or syngas.
No matter what feeds the process, when plasma gasification process takes place, energy is released and forms an energy rich synthesis gas (or syngas). Syngas can be used as a replacement fuel for natural gas, or converted into diesel fuel or ethanol, or used to produce electricity.
Currently, 20 employees are working at WPC in Mt. Pleasant. While the company is still settling into their new space, daily activities will consist of manufacturing, testing, engineering, and Research & Development.