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Production of Solid Sustainable Energy Carriers from Biomass by Means of Torrefaction


Torrefaction is considered worldwide as a promising key technology for boosting large-scale implementation of bioenergy. It involves heating biomass in the absence of oxygen to a temperature of 200 to 320 °C. As a result, the biomass looses all its moisture and becomes easy to grind and water resistant, which reduces the risk of spontaneous ignition and biological degradation and permits outdoor storage. By combining torrefaction with pelletisation or briquetting, biomass is converted into a high-energy-density commodity solid fuel or bioenergy carrier with superior properties in view of (long-distance) transport, handling and storage, and also in many major end-use applications (e.g. co-firing in pulverised-coal fired power plants, (co-)gasification in entrained-flow gasifiers and combustion in distributed pellet boilers. Moreover, torrefaction-based bioenergy carriers may form a good starting point for biorefinery routes.

The current SECTOR project is focussed on the further development of torrefaction-based technologies for the production of solid bioenergy carriers up to pilot-plant scale and beyond and on supporting market introduction of torrefaction-based bioenergy carriers as a commodity renewable solid fuel. The core of the project concerns the further development of torrefaction and densification technology for a broad biomass feedstock range including clean woody biomass, forestry residues, agro-residues and imported biomass. Production recipes will be optimised on the basis of extensive logistics and end-use testing. Much attention will be given to the development, quality assurance and standardisation of dedicated analysis and test methods. The experimental work will be accompanied by extensive desk studies to define major biomass-to-end-use value chains, design deployment strategies and scenarios, and conduct a full sustainability assessment. The results will be fed into CEN/ISO working groups and international sustainability forums.

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Torgauer strasse 116
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Sachsen Leipzig Leipzig
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Daniela Thrän (Dr.)
EU contribution
No data

Participants (21)