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Slide show: Swedish industry representatives and academics at a recent visit to BioEndev Industrial Demonstration Unit for biomass torrefaction being built at Holmsund, Sweden. Partners SP Processum and Bio4Energy organised the visit in connection to a joint seminar. Photos by Bio4Energy.

January 2015 will see the startup of a high-efficiency, 65 million-Swedish-kroner demonstration unit for the torrefaction of woody biomass at Holmsund, Sweden. This technology for roasting biomass invented by Bio4Energy researchers has already been tested at pilot facilities at Umeå, a 20-minute drive from the demonstration unit in progress. While not fully operational until April 2015, the demonstration unit would be "cold started" at the beginning of 2015, according This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.of Umeå University, and for the first two years turn woody sawdust into tightly packed, high-energy density and hydrophobic heating pellets.

Nordin is a co-owner of BioEndev which small firm built the demonstration unit together with Swedish industrial partners such as BRUKS and SCA. This week, he and the BioEndev chief technical officer This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for the first time gave regional industry representatives and academia a tour of the facilities, consisting of several industrial buildings tucked away behind a barbed-wire fence in a forested area just off the main road to Holmsund from Umeå.  

When operating in full swing, the demonstration unit would turn out two tonnes of torrefied pellets per hour, Nordin told the 54 safety-helmet clad participants sipping coffee from paper cups while being shown a presentation. The next unit to be built, for commercial purposes, would produce 15-20 tonnes per hour and at a time in future yet to be specified, he added.

Nordin did not have to say that torrefaction is much believed in as a method for turning bulky biomass from wood and woody residue into an easy-to-transport-and-store product designed to have ideal qualities as a heating fuel or for being turned into "green" oil, as the researchers call it. Most of the participants already knew since they had participated in the opening of the Umeå pilot facilities a year ago. The very same facilities which operate 24/7, turn out 150 kilogrammes of torrefied materials an hour and which are currently being adapted for upcoming trials of a Bio2Fuels concept, invented by Bio4Energy scientists. This concept and its processes are used to produce liquid biofuels and bio coal with great cost efficiency, Nordin said.

"The effect is double because we make fuel and 'green' coal in one process", Nordin said.

"Here we make fuels from the [synthesis] gas [resulting from the process], instead of making it from the solid material. We save two process steps and cost is reduced as we do not have to purify the gas, nor deal with the ash since there isn’t any", he said;

"We already know that the metallurgical industry wants the 'green' coal".

Attachments:
Download this file (IDU 2014-10-22bPubl_Anders-Nordin.pdf)Torrefaction-of-woody-biomass-to-be-demonstrated-in-Sweden-from-2015_SE_AN[Presentation-in-Swedish-by-Bio4Energy-researcher-Anders-Nordin-of-Umeå-University.]3315 kB

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