Product News
June 2014

Trying to keep up with all the latest products available in the biomass industry can be an impossible task, however, with the help of Wood Bioenergy magazine and our ever-updating blog site—you can now stay up-to-date on the products that really matter, and get first hand knowledge of their implementation and performance.


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Astec Builds Pellet Plant From Within

Astec’s state-of-the-art wood pellet plant features a number of industry-firsts. Astec, Inc. is a member of the Astec Industries, Inc. family of companies, a billion dollar per year corporation headquartered in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Because Astec builds most of the equipment in its own manufacturing facilities instead of procuring from other manufacturers, it refers to itself as an EBC provider. This model allows Astec to guarantee production rates, pellet quality and environmental compliance. This model also means that Astec is accountable to its customers.

Most major plant components are pre-assembled in Astec factories and shipped to the site ready to lift from the truck and set directly into operating position on an asphalt or concrete pad. Because of existing standard designs of its modular equipment, Astec is able to have the first line of a new plant producing pellets within eight months of signing, assuming reasonable, typical weather conditions.

The plant components consist largely of tried and true machines that have been in productive service and perfected for decades in extreme conditions of service all over the world. These proven designs have been upgraded with the latest technology. Using proven equipment with many possible applications provides owners and investors/lenders with a high level of security./p>

CEM Emphasizes Micro Chips

Many chipper manufacturers believe that in order to manufacture micro chips, a proven and reliable chipper for conventional chips only needs to be set up to cut a small size chip. This thinking often comes from their experience making conventional-chip chippers for the pulp & paper industry. What these suppliers fail to recognize is that cost effectively making true micro chips is far more difficult than this.

Because of CEM Machine’s extensive knowledge of chip-making, CEM recognized immediately that true micro chips form and behave differently in many ways from conventional chips. CEM therefore invested in researching and developing new patented technology for efficiently producing true micro chips specifically for the pellet and biomass industries.

While making micro chips from logs requires somewhat more energy than making conventional chips from logs, it requires far less energy than making conventional sized chips and then refining these chips into micro chips through the use of reducing machines.

Bandit Offers Micro Chip Drum

Whole tree chippers from Bandit Industries are now available with a versatile new micro chip drum, designed to produce dimensional wood chips approximately ¼ in. in size. This drum can also be easily reconfigured to produce standard chips, as well as large maxi chips to serve multiple markets with the same machine. The micro chip drum is available on the Model 2590, 3090, 3590 and 3590XL, and features double the cuts per revolution compared to a standard Bandit drum.

Micro chips are typically the chips of choice for wood pellet production, as the smaller chip dries quicker and more evenly, allowing for more efficient pellet production with higher energy yields. Larger chips are also favored by certain fuel wood markets, but regardless of the market, uniformity in chip size is vital.

The new drum works in conjunction with Bandit’s Card Breaker System, which is designed to prevent oversize chips from exiting the drum. The result is a very uniform wood chip that can be specifically sized for individual fuel wood markets. These changes do not affect throwing power or production, nor are any special chip accelerators required.

Morbark Promotes Micro Chipper

The Morbark 40/36 whole tree drum chipper was introduced in 2008 as a compact, affordable and productive biomass chipper. The latest model includes Morbark’s exclusive enhanced Advantage 3 drum for the creation of uniform micro chips; an operator-friendly slide-in forestry grate system to reduce oversized chips for a consistent, high-quality end product; and a mechanically driven chip accelerator to fully load vans with the micro chips.

“With new biomass plants being built in the United States and the rapid expansion of wood pellet exports to Europe to meet the European Union’s mandate that 20% of its energy come from renewable sources by 2020, our customers need a cost-effective system for making micro chips,” says John Foote, Morbark VP of Sales and Marketing. “The 40/36 MicroChipper is the solution. We are able to produce a far superior product, producing 95% acceptable micro chips at volumes of more than 70 tons per hour.”

With an average fuel consumption of 2.25 tons of micro chips produced per gallon of fuel used, the Morbark 40/36 MicroChipper allows owners to reduce costs and maximize profits. In customer tests, 95% of the micro chips produced passed through a ½ in. grate, and an average of 65% passed through a ¼ in. grate. These micro chips are vital for pellet mills, eliminating the need to regrind the wood fiber prior to pelletizing.

The MicroChipper’s internal drive feed system has fewer moving parts, creating a high-performance, low-maintenance machine, while the Morbark Integrated Control Systems allows for diagnostic monitoring to reduce downtime.

Rawlings Enhances Hog Efficiency

The original rotary wood hog was invented and developed by Rawlings Manufacturing in 1977. Since then the family owned company has manufactured and marketed several series of product lines. The wood waste recovery systems are available in stationary, portable and skid mounted systems; both vertical and horizontal models are available. Rawlings Wood hogs come in all shapes and sizes, from simple stand-alone vertical hog’s for sawmills, pulp, paper, power & pellet plants to complete custom horizontal hog systems that can process material of any length such a logs, forest debris, and urban waste.

The Rawlings Patented Super Hi-Inertia Hog is designed to run 24/7 365 days a year. The rotor is equipped with the highest mass moment of inertia in the industry with the lowest operating costs per ton of material processed.

Operating at lower RPM’s, the machine still provides the crushing and shearing power needed to handle really tough jobs, like green waste, cypress, redwood, cedar, poplar, and a wide range of other stringy and fibrous materials. The Rawlings Super-Hi Inertia Rotor was designed to maximize inertia while minimizing its weight. With less downtime and easier maintenance customers have applauded both the Super-Hi Inertia rotor as well as the Rocwear striker system.

DuraTech Provides Larger Chipper

DuraTech Industries offers the TC-15 Tree Chipper. The TC-15 is the larger option in the DuraTech tree chipper line. With option of a 122 HP (91 kw) CAT C4.4 or 139 HP (103.7 kw) CAT C4.4 diesel engine and PT-Tech clutch, the powerful TC-15 can grind logs up to 15 in. in diameter.

“We are excited to offer a larger tree chipper with the same advanced and powerful technology utilized in our grinders,” says Bob Strahm of DuraTech Industries. “Our TC-12 Tree Chipper entered us into a new market, and now we are expanding further into this territory.”

The TC-15 features a spring-loaded feed wheel with adjustable down pressure, an optional height sensor that automatically adjusts the feed roller to material size and an optional hydraulic gathering winch. A hydraulic two feed roller system feeds the four 4.5 in. knives designed to chip wood waste. This high-powered unit discharges debris 360 degrees from the hydraulic rotating adjustable chip spout, allowing the user to alter chip disposal.

The TC-15 has multiple safety features like the innovative hopper safety light bars with easy and instant shut down. There are also two E-stop switches, a disc hood closed proximity switch and a breakaway brake switch to ensure the safety of the operator.

The new tree chipper is available with a pintle or ball hitch and can easily be towed to a job site. This unit is compact measuring 79 in. x 208 in.

Valmet To Supply TSE Power Plant

Turun Seudun Energiantuotanto Oy (TSE) has chosen Valmet as the boiler supplier for the upcoming power plant in Naantali, Finland.

Valmet’s delivery will include a fluidized circulating bed (CFB) boiler and flue gas cleaning equipment. The steam capacity of the boiler plant will be 390 MW.

According to plans, wood chips collected within a 100-150 kilometer distance from the power plant will form the main bio fuel.

  • Valmet also announced that the Valmet-supplied gasification plant at GoBiGas (Gothenburg Biomass Gasification Project) was inaugurated on March 12 in Gothenburg. The plant was commissioned in late 2013 and will produce gas by gasifying forest residues and wood pellets. The produced gas is similar to natural gas and will primarily be used in the transport sector with the goal to switch from fossil fuel to biofuel.
  • The biomass is gasified in a process called “indirect gasification” developed by the Austrian company Repotec. Valmet is handling the engineering work for the gasification plant in Gothenburg with a license from Repotec.

    Gasification takes place in a separate reactor and heat is transferred from a combustion chamber by circulation of hot bed material, i.e. indirect gasification. Biomass is fed into the gasifier where it, on contact with the hot bed material, undergoes thermochemical decomposition. After the cleaning and methanation, the gas is imported to the natural gas supply and is used in Göteborg Energi’s power plant.

    Because of the high quality, the biomethane can be fed to the existing distribution grid, where it is mixed with natural gas. Combining a gasification plant using biomass as fuel and a methanation plant is unique.

    TerraSource Nears Completion of DDC

    When the U.S. office of Jeffrey Rader, a brand of TerraSource Global, relocated from Woodruff, SC to Hillside Park in Duncan, SC in 2012, a plan was put in place to create a single Demonstration & Development Center (DDC) facility for all TerraSource Global material tests, demonstrations and product development.

    Bryan Lanham, Director of Product Development for TerraSource Global, was charged with the task of bringing together three brands’ machines and auxiliary equipment from three existing test labs and designing the layout of the new 9,000 sq. ft. lab space.

    “The project was broken into two major phases,” Lanham says. “The first phase was moving the Jeffrey Rader brand equipment from Woodruff, which was completed in September 2013. The second phase was the relocation of equipment from our Belleville, Ill. and Broomall, Pa. test labs, which is nearly complete.”

    As the DDC nears completion, more than two dozen trials have been performed in the new lab. “The results of these trials have been valuable to both our customers and to us internally,” Lanham says. “We are looking forward to the upcoming opportunity to evaluate the Gundlach, Jeffrey Rader and Pennsylvania Crusher brands against each other. This will help us to do a better job for future customers’ applications and point us in the direction for new product development projects.”

    According to Vice President of Power and Mining Doug Sublett, “One of the biggest advantages our new test lab offers is that we can test material on a range of equipment rather than just one piece.” Material can be run through wood hogs, hammermills, sizers, granulators, roll crushers, impactors and Cage-Paktors.

    Adjacent the DDC, a 1,800 square feet Training Center is also available for sales, customer testing meetings and conferences. Private office space, phones and wireless internet access is available in the Training Center.

    Anyone who sends in raw materials to be tested on TerraSource Global equipment will also be invited to visit the office and watch the testing live.

    Precision Names VP Of Sales

    Precision Machine and Manufacturing, Inc., a leading U.S. manufacturer of rotary feeders, valves and screw conveyors, announced that Neil Burck has joined the company as Vice President of Sales and Marketing, a newly created position. Burck will head the company’s sales and marketing teams.

    VBS Distributes Manager Software

    Verdanté BioEnergy Services (VBS), a provider of technology solutions for the biomass energy sector, announced its appointment as the exclusive U.S. distributor of Finland-based MHG Systems’ Biomass Manager software.

    Acrowood Emphasizes Chippers, Screens

    Acrowood and its predecessors Black Clawson and Sumner Iron Works have supplied chippers and forest products equipment for more than 100 years. The common thread for all this machinery has been efficient and reliable operation with minimal maintenance.

    Since the 1970s, Acrowood’s robust design disc scalpers have provided years of trouble free operation, reliably segregating grossly over-sized material and contaminants from wood chips, sawdust, bark, and other biomass or fuel stocks.

    Acrowood Slant Disc Chippers have long been used to efficiently reduce wastewood from sawmills, producing high quality pulp chips from sawmill residues.

    Dual drive suspended rotary screens sort over-length material and fines from wood chips and are also used to screen sawdust and biomass prior to further processing. The unique screen design locates drive components outside the screen pan for easy maintenance access.

    Acrowood also manufactures and supplies disc thickness screens and its unique DiamondRoll thickness and fines screens which offer superior screening efficiency for chip thickness screening systems. Air density separation systems process a variety of feedstocks, removing high density contaminants such as biological knots, metal, or rocks.

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