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John Whitney - Founder


Address: Columbia, MO 65203


Tel: 707-704-6878

Professional info


John Whitney has over 30 years of experience and 16 issued patents in waste management and recycling, with an emphasis on thermal processes.  He is considered a leading expert in thermal process applications, gasification, incineration, drying and thermal desorption for waste management.  Mr. Whitney has broad core competencies in chemical and mechanical technologies and has been tasked with solving some of the most difficult process design and startup issues for some of the largest waste management companies in the industry.   



Expert Witness 

Technical Suport for Legal

Equipment Design

Thermal Process Design

HAZ Opps Review



Drying / Thermal Desorption - Whitney’s experience includes design, build and operation of rotary kilns, screw processors and the associated peripheral equipment.  His experience base covers all aspects of process development, equipment design, specification, application, startup, optimization, repair and rebuild of rotary kilns and screw processors for drying, devolatizing and pyrolizing applications.


Experience with specific feedstocks and processes:

  • Drying mechanically dewatered biosolids sludge, including materials that contain, FOG, septage and primary sludge that can adhere to the heat exchange surfaces.

  • Recycling of drilling fluids by devolatizing drill cuttings to extract the oil from the solids.

  • The devolatization of hydrocarbon containing RCRA waste, consisting of the shredded whole stream: shredded drums, small containers, cardboard, plastics, rags, wood, adsorbents and hydrocarbons of all types. The condensing systems substantially separated the lower boiling solvents, water, higher boiling hydrocarbons and oils.  Refinements to the system including inerting and controls resulted in a large scale, safe, 90% uptime operation.

  • The indirectly heated anaerobic devolatization of soils and refinery wastes for delisting. Non-detect for hydrocarbons has been achieved at discharge temperatures in the 800F to 950F range.

  • Precipitated minerals cake drying in hydrometallurgy.

  • Thermal processing of high purity, inorganic chemicals.

  • Indirect and direct drying of agriculture and woody biomass.


Experience with dryer and thermal desorption system peripheral equipment:

  • Utility systems for thermal fluid or electric heating

  • Feeding and material handling systems

  • Cooling systems

  • Off take and material handling systems

  • Non-condensable gas management

  • Inert gas supply and management

  • Condenser systems, including automatic in line cleaning

  • Instrumentation and automated control of the complete system


Gasification – Mr. Whitney has consulted on several gasification projects including as owners’ engineer and consulting with Fluor Daniels on various gasification technology projects worldwide.  Key projects include a proposed 200 million RCRA waste gasification project in which Whitney is an inventor of the process.


Additional Project Experience Information:

  • Independent Stave Co, Lebanon, MO: Designed, built and commissioned a 9mm Btu/h woody biomass gasifier and a similar gasifier of 25mm Btu/h for another client.

  • Producers Rice Mill, Stuttgart, AR: Various equipment designs for ash cooling and stripping, feedstock and product evaluations with industrial scale rice hull gasifiers.

  • Rineco, Owner’s Engineer: Fluor Daniel Inc. European and Japanese gasification and syngas application technology evaluation. Specific oxygen blown gasifier designs for metal containing mixed waste stream gasification with emphasis on feed systems, gas clean up and utilization, ash cooling and handling. (400mm Btu/h capacity)

  • Rineco: Complete design of air blown dry bottom gasification and syngas utilization plant for shredded solid RCRA feedstock through synthesis and finished product production. (200mmBtu/h capacity)

  • Max West Energy, Sanford, FL: Startup of fluidized bed gasifier for dried wastewater biosolids to clean energy.


Incineration – Whitney’s experience in incineration processes includes the design, build and commissioning of incineration systems.    Whitney worked on all aspects of equipment design and commissioning in the first PCB incinerator in the US.  Whitney is also the inventor of proprietary burners, controls and feed systems for secondary fuels for cement kilns.  


Equipment design, redesign, rebuild and repair experience:


Over twenty five years experience in industrial technology conceptualizing equipment for an application, leading the specific design, modification, rebuild and repair to ensure productivity where there were no existing practical off the shelf solutions. This is whole plant process and equipment technology, application and operation.


Equipment Design


  • Ash and feed stock material handling systems

  • Solid and liquid fuel processing with shredders

  • Hydropulpers

  • Automatic bucket fillers

  • Barrel burners

  • Drum crushers

  • Cryogenic metal processors

  • Laboratory equipment

  • Pipeline grinders

  • Magnetic separators

  • Cement kiln burners for secondary fuels with entrained solids

  • Pumping systems for abrasive solid fuels

  • Inerting and padding systems

  • Containment systems

  • Fire detection and control systems

  • Thermal desorbsion units with pyrolysis

  • Highway tanker trailers and unloading system

  • Particle sizing equipment

  • Feeders

  • Specialized conveyors

  • Various other novel equipment developed or modified as necessary to safely process nearly all types of hydrocarbon containing waste.



Systems and Methods for Processing Waste Materials

US 8561802 - Issued 


Method and Device for Agitation of Tank-Stored Materials 

US 8328409 - Issued 


Systems and Methods for Processing Waste Materials 

US 8047144 - Issued 


Systems and Methods for Processing Waste Materials 

US 7421959 - Issued 


Process for Producing a Liquid Fuel Composition 

US 7419514 - Issued 


Systems and Methods for Processing Waste Materials 

US 7341155 - Issued 


Process for Recycling Heterogeneous Waste 

US 6476084 - Issued 


Process for Recycling Heterogeneous Waste 

US 6211254 - Issued 


Process for Making Ammonia from Heterogeneous Feedstock 

US 6086840 - Issued 


Apparatus and Methods for Burning Waste and Waste Slurries 

US 5363780 - Issued 


Apparatus and Methods for Comminuting 

US 5273220 - Issued 


Apparatus and Methods for Burning Waste and Waste Slurries 

US 5271340 - Issued 


Gasifying System and Method 

US 13/657263 - Issued 


Method and Device for Agitation of Tank-Stored Materials 

US 13/685043 - Issued 


Screw-Type Heat-Exchanger System with Variable-Clocking Screw Conveyors 

US 13/372045 - Issued 


Systems and Methods for Processing Waste Materials 

US 11/245649 - Issued 

Work History

2004 - present

In private practice as a consultant.


1984 - 2004

Founder / Vice President of Research and Development for Rineco Chemical Industries

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