Our Biomass Boiler

Embracing Sustainable Energy Since 2014: Our Biomass Boiler at Rochdale Headquarters

Our Biomass Boiler

News

Posted on 

May 24, 2024

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We are thrilled to highlight our biomass boiler at our headquarters in Rochdale, which we installed in September 2014. This significant step underscores our long-standing commitment to sustainability and reducing our carbon footprint. By adopting this eco-friendly technology, we have been enhancing our energy efficiency and contributing to the global effort to mitigate climate change for nearly a decade. To date, we have saved a remarkable 955,760 KWH of energy, demonstrating the substantial impact of our sustainable practices.

 

What Are Pellets?

Pellets are small, cylindrical pieces of compressed biomass, typically around 1 cm in length. They are produced through a process that involves reducing the size of the biomass, drying it, and then compressing it into dense, flowable pellets. This densification process optimises handling and transportation, making pellets an efficient and practical fuel source.

Pellets are primarily used to generate heat in domestic wood heaters and commercial furnaces and boilers, as well as electricity in power stations. The biomass used to make pellets can come from various sources, including forestry and agricultural residues. Forestry residues include sawmill by-products like sawdust and offcuts, as well as small branches and low-quality logs that have no other market. Agricultural residues might include wheat straw, grape marc, sugar cane bagasse, among others.

 

Types of Pellets: White vs. Black

While white pellets are the most commonly used, there are also black pellets, which offer several advantages. Black pellets are produced through torrefaction or steam-explosion (SE) processes. Torrefaction involves heating biomass to 200-340 °C in a low-oxygen environment, while the SE process uses saturated steam to break down wood fibres into smaller particles.

 

Black pellets have reduced moisture content, higher calorific value, bulk density, energy density, and water repellency compared to white pellets. These characteristics make them less prone to storage losses and easier to handle with minimal dust, thereby reducing the risk of explosions.

 

The Role of Pellets in Power Generation

Pellets are used to generate electricity either in standalone biomass power stations or through co-firing with coal in coal-fired power stations. An example of a large-scale biomass power station fueled by pellets is the Drax Power Station in the UK. Drax Power supplies about 9.3% of the UK’s electricity needs, with four of its six 650 MW units converted to use white pellets.

 

Our Commitment to a Greener Future

By integrating a biomass boiler into our Rochdale headquarters, we are taking a bold step towards sustainable energy use. This initiative not only reduces our reliance on fossil fuels but also leverages locally-sourced biomass, supporting the local economy and reducing transportation emissions.

 

We believe that embracing renewable energy technologies is crucial for a sustainable future. Our new biomass boiler is a testament to our dedication to environmental stewardship and our proactive approach to sustainability. We are excited about the positive impact this will have on our operations and the environment.

 

Stay tuned for more updates on our sustainability initiatives and how we continue to lead the way in green energy solutions. Together, we can make a difference for a brighter, cleaner future.

Other Posts

We are thrilled to highlight our biomass boiler at our headquarters in Rochdale, which we installed in September 2014. This significant step underscores our long-standing commitment to sustainability and reducing our carbon footprint. By adopting this eco-friendly technology, we have been enhancing our energy efficiency and contributing to the global effort to mitigate climate change for nearly a decade. To date, we have saved a remarkable 955,760 KWH of energy, demonstrating the substantial impact of our sustainable practices.

 

What Are Pellets?

Pellets are small, cylindrical pieces of compressed biomass, typically around 1 cm in length. They are produced through a process that involves reducing the size of the biomass, drying it, and then compressing it into dense, flowable pellets. This densification process optimises handling and transportation, making pellets an efficient and practical fuel source.

Pellets are primarily used to generate heat in domestic wood heaters and commercial furnaces and boilers, as well as electricity in power stations. The biomass used to make pellets can come from various sources, including forestry and agricultural residues. Forestry residues include sawmill by-products like sawdust and offcuts, as well as small branches and low-quality logs that have no other market. Agricultural residues might include wheat straw, grape marc, sugar cane bagasse, among others.

 

Types of Pellets: White vs. Black

While white pellets are the most commonly used, there are also black pellets, which offer several advantages. Black pellets are produced through torrefaction or steam-explosion (SE) processes. Torrefaction involves heating biomass to 200-340 °C in a low-oxygen environment, while the SE process uses saturated steam to break down wood fibres into smaller particles.

 

Black pellets have reduced moisture content, higher calorific value, bulk density, energy density, and water repellency compared to white pellets. These characteristics make them less prone to storage losses and easier to handle with minimal dust, thereby reducing the risk of explosions.

 

The Role of Pellets in Power Generation

Pellets are used to generate electricity either in standalone biomass power stations or through co-firing with coal in coal-fired power stations. An example of a large-scale biomass power station fueled by pellets is the Drax Power Station in the UK. Drax Power supplies about 9.3% of the UK’s electricity needs, with four of its six 650 MW units converted to use white pellets.

 

Our Commitment to a Greener Future

By integrating a biomass boiler into our Rochdale headquarters, we are taking a bold step towards sustainable energy use. This initiative not only reduces our reliance on fossil fuels but also leverages locally-sourced biomass, supporting the local economy and reducing transportation emissions.

 

We believe that embracing renewable energy technologies is crucial for a sustainable future. Our new biomass boiler is a testament to our dedication to environmental stewardship and our proactive approach to sustainability. We are excited about the positive impact this will have on our operations and the environment.

 

Stay tuned for more updates on our sustainability initiatives and how we continue to lead the way in green energy solutions. Together, we can make a difference for a brighter, cleaner future.

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