ITB and Local Government of Musi Banyuasin Signed MoU in Implementation of Bio-Hydrocarbon Technology

By Adi Permana

Editor -

BANDUNG, – Intitut Teknologi Bandung (ITB) signed MoU with Local Government of Musi Banyuasin Regency (Muba) for the implementation and utilization of palm oil-based bio-hydrocarbon technology to generate renewable biofuel made of palm oil.

The MoU was signed by Rector of ITB, Prof. Dr. Ir. Kadarsah Suryadi, DEA., and Regent of Muba, Dodi Reza Alex Noerdin at Executive Meeting Room A, ITB Rectorate Building, Bandung on Thursday (28/3/2019).

Regent of Muba explained that the local government is promoting the development of biofuel. Muba itself is a well-known place for palm oil potential. Almost 80% of its people work in palm related field. Therefore, this MoU with ITB is important because ITB has done many developments in the processing of biofuel.

“We think this cooperation will be very important and strategic. On one end, ITB has the technology and experience, and on the other end, Local Government of Muba has strong commitment to empower palm farmers through this hydrocarbon technology,” he said.

The Local Government of Muba also plans to create mini ‘standalone’ refinery to cut distance between palm oil processor and the source. “This MoU is our commitment to the advancement of technology and continuity of natural resources utilization in Musi Banyuasin,” said Dodi.

The Rector of ITB welcomed the cooperation. In his opinion, energy is a fundamental issue. ITB manage a Catalyst Teaching Industry that has produced catalysts that convert palm oil into biodiesel, bioavtur, and biogasoline.

“With the catalysts they produce, when palm oil is converted into biofuel, it can generate avtur with -70o Celsius freezing point. While airplanes require mere -47o until -49o Celsius. It means, we way exceed the minimum requirement for flight. With palms all over Musi Banyuasin, hopefully we can enhance the quality of avtur in our nation,” he said.

The rector also supports the future cooperation plan as an effort to show the world that Indonesia can produce the best thing in terms of renewable energy. “We fully support the plan because it is not a trivial thing but a strategic one,” he said.

Catalyst Teaching Industry at Chemical Reaction and Catalysis Laboratory (TRKK) of Faculty of Industrial Technology (FTI) of ITB has produced innovations in catalysts. Research on this catalyst development has been initiated since 35 years ago by Prof. Subagjo and researchers in Chemical Engineering together with several students in Undergraduate, Master’s, and Doctoral Programs in Chemical Engineering of ITB. This laboratory is one of the proofs that Indonesia’s research products can respond to the challenge of national independence.

With the catalyst, Indonesia can exploit to the maximum its abundance of palm. The laboratory was officially inaugurated by Minister of Research, Technology, and Higher Education, Prof. Moh Nasir with the name Catalyst Teaching Industry.