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Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
02-22-2014, 09:32 AM
Post: #1
Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
I've been curious about this product since Thermogen announce their plans for the Old Millinocket mill, and have done a little sleuthing to get to the bottom of these questions.
What I've found could be good news for North Maine if Cate Street is able to get this up and running.

Here is a pretty good link to explain the process and the resulting product and its attributes;

http://biomassmagazine.com/articles/8836...et-pursuit

And here is a list of sites explaining another process to produce bio coal called "steam exploded black pellets".
Interesting stuff if you fancy that sort of thing.

http://www.bing.com/search?q=Steam+explo...b88efbf6f1

Is it considered a conspiracy if they really are after you?Huh
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02-22-2014, 09:45 AM
Post: #2
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
(02-22-2014 09:32 AM)Ugene Wrote:  I've been curious about this product since Thermogen announce their plans for the Old Millinocket mill, and have done a little sleuthing to get to the bottom of these questions.
What I've found could be good news for North Maine if Cate Street is able to get this up and running.

Here is a pretty good link to explain the process and the resulting product and its attributes;

http://biomassmagazine.com/articles/8836...et-pursuit

And here is a list of sites explaining another process to produce bio coal called "steam exploded black pellets".
Interesting stuff if you fancy that sort of thing.

http://www.bing.com/search?q=Steam+explo...b88efbf6f1


I have thought since the start that this may well have some potential for the future. I don't think the future is going to be in paper, considering how rapidly they are building paper mills in China.

I like this idea to the "taconite pellets" that are made out of the iron ore in Minnesota, in order to create a consistent product that is easy to handle. My understanding is that there may well be a pretty good market in Europe for these pellets, as there are not lots of trees for fuel in many areas.

The only hooker in the thing that I see is how financially capable Cate Street will turn out to be in the long run. The Millinocket area, and it's people could sure use this kind of break......it if works out for them. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for sure.

WC
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02-22-2014, 01:17 PM
Post: #3
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
I had not heard this term before, looks like torrefaction is just a form of pyrolysis (i.e. anaerobic charcoal making) that occurs at the low end of the pyrolysis temperature range and is comparatively a less complete transformation aimed at improving biomass fuel sources rather than complete conversion to a biochar.
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02-22-2014, 02:55 PM
Post: #4
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
What's the difference between torrefied wood and charcoal. Both are produced using the same method, and the finished product has similar properties.

charlie
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02-22-2014, 04:21 PM
Post: #5
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
Charlie the sense I got was that torrefaction is just not as complete a pyrolysis, so it's the same reactions but to a less extent. The source material loses about 10% of its energy content in torrefaction, it would be more in pyrolysis. But in pyrolysis there is often an attempt to recover the gasses produced which return some of this energy to the equation. I don't know if that's done in torrefaction, but I'd guess torrefaction set up is less expensive, less energy intensive, and is more about upgrading wood pellets than making a completely transformed charcoal. This is based on some links I scanned, and I'm not sure about it.
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02-22-2014, 08:31 PM (This post was last modified: 02-22-2014 08:35 PM by Ugene.)
Post: #6
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
The volatiles are burned to pre dry the material at the head end.
The main difference between char and torrified wood is that T W is densified in the pelleting process.
The main reason TW is being sent to Europe is because there is a heavy carbon tax levied on a per ton basis to coal burning plants.
T W can be co fired with no modifications due to nearly the same bulk density and thermal equivelance per ton.
This material is also pretty much waterproof so the materials handling processes and facilities are the same as coal.

The system Cate Street is considering would use microwave generators to cook the wood in a batch process.
I found a good link to a continuous flow tower process with a lot of info on the economic viability of their particular process, but I can't seem to get back to it.

Is it considered a conspiracy if they really are after you?Huh
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03-07-2014, 08:54 AM
Post: #7
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
Today's BDN reports that the torrefied wood process proposed for Millinocket will not be built. Nobody has ever been successful at producing torrefied wood with microwaves. Instead they would like to try a process that is twice as expensive. This sure sounds like the many other pie in the sky proposals that have taken Millinocket to the cleaners over the last couple of decades. Anybody remember Avenger Boat? the Rhinolite 500 horsepower engine that weighed the same as a 5 horse Briggs and Stratton? The magic in-line water tester? All of those "ventures" needed town money and would produce "hundreds of jobs".
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03-07-2014, 02:26 PM
Post: #8
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
Roger
The microwave process required cheap electricity to run the microwaves as a key ingredient.
Brookfield has shown that will not be the case if Cate Street doesn't start the E. Millinocket mill or unless the legislature goes against the constitution, forcing Brookfield to sell their product more cheaply.
I may have missed it, but where did it say the process was twice as expensive?

Is it considered a conspiracy if they really are after you?Huh
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03-15-2014, 08:01 AM
Post: #9
RE: Torrefied Wood What is it? What will it do for Maine?
Some more announcements in the torrefied wood pellet world;

http://www.biomassmagazine.com/articles/...-to-zilkha
http://www.biomassmagazine.com/articles/...n-facility
http://www.biomassmagazine.com/articles/...ed-biomass

And an interesting article about one of the products produced by the company in the last piece

http://www.motherearthnews.com/organic-g...x?PageId=1

Is it considered a conspiracy if they really are after you?Huh
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