The ETI has launched a new biomass feedstock improvement process project which aims to show how the removal of impurities and contaminated material from sustainable biomass could make bioenergy cheaper and more efficient, consequently delivering better greenhouse gas savings.
The £2.2m project will be led by UK national biomass specialists Forest Fuels working with Uniper Technologies.
A prototype plant will be built to pre-treat biomass feedstocks to remove impurities at Forest Fuels’ depot near Widmerpool, Nottinghamshire. The cleaned feedstocks will then be blended and combustion tested at the University of Sheffield’s Pilot scale Advanced Capture Technology PACT Facilities, with expert support provided by the University’s Energy 2050 Institute.
Biomass fuels, including waste wood, arboricultural and forestry residues, and purpose-grown biomass feedstocks such as Miscanthus, often contain undesirable contaminants, picked up for example during harvesting, transport or storage. The idea behind the project is that this pre-treatment process will reduce such concentrations and therefore deliver downstream operational benefits and value.
The ETI project will use various biomass feedstocks including waste wood, energy crops and other waste arisings to test the process.
If successful, this process could lead to lower environmental and operating costs for power producers leading to a lower cost of low carbon energy.