The wood industry uses a lot of energy. It also produces a lot of renewable fuel in the form of waste wood, chips, and sawdust. On site wood-based electric generation, heat-recovery and co-generation therefore offer serious potential for harnessing this waste and achieving big reductions in operating costs. Many of these solutions offer flexible, highly controllable energy output, making them ideal both for intermittent and continuous operation.
Companies seeking solutions for generating their own power from wood-biomass can have confidence in fully automated, high-efficiency fixed-bed gasifiers of the type made by LIGNA exhibitor Fröling. Meanwhile, manufactures like Nolting Holzfeuerungstechnik have a solid track record when it comes to systems for using waste wood for carbon-neutral heating. Then of course there are solutions – known as combined-heat-and-power or cogeneration units – that generate heat and electricity simultaneously. The market for these kinds of products is extensive, ranging from the small "Smartlbock Mini" cogeneration units provided by Burkhardt GmbH to the big turnkey plants made by Viessmann. Needless to say, both of these manufacturers will be exhibiting at LIGNA. Added efficiencies can be achieved by generating power from the unused waste heat produced by cogeneration units. Providers like Dorset Green Machines will be at LIGNA showing how this can be achieved. Similarly, biomass boiler plants can be fitted with flue-gas heat recovery systems for added fuel savings. Three kinds of heat recovery technologies can add value to plants of all sizes, as the Kohlbach Group will be demonstrating at the upcoming LIGNA.
In wood chipping operations, vacuum extraction is an absolute must, although it does use a lot of energy. Luckily, it is now possible for the warm exhaust air from vacuum extraction systems to be filtered, recirculated and used for heating purposes. These sorts of heat recovery technologies offer major savings, as Polytechnik will be demonstrating at the upcoming LIGNA show. There, from 22 to 26 May 2017, Halls 25 and 26 and the open-air site will be home to all of the world’s leading providers of high-efficiency energy supply technologies for the wood processing and wood working industries.