Forest Concepts Research & Development

Wood chips in Crumbler

Woody Biomass Size Reduction with Selective Material Orientation

Abstract  Roundwood logs from forests and energy plantations must be chipped, ground, or otherwise comminuted into small particles prior to conversion to solid or liquid biofuels. Results & discussion: Rotary veneer followed by cross-grain shearing is demonstrated to be a novel and low energy consuming method for primary breakdown of logs into a raw material …

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Crumbler Screening

Advances in Woody Biomass Drying by Taking Advantage of Surface Properties

Abstract  Comprehensive models for grain drying have been derived using critical data available from literature dating back to Shedd’s 1953 work on pressure drop. Although dryer design data for grains and many industrial materials are known, Forest Concepts has developed data and evidence that biomass feedstocks are sufficiently unique that published design data is not …

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Crumbler Cutterset

Beneficiation of Chipped and Shredded Woody Biomass

Abstract Forest Concepts, with funding from USDA NIFA SBIR program, developed methods and equipment to reprocess low-value dirty forest chips, tree service chips, and hog fuel into high value clean wood fiber and other valuable fractions. Traditional clean sources of mill residuals (sawdust, shavings, and chips) are declining rapidly due to improved sawmilling efficiencies and …

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Crumbles with Hand

Shear Processing of Wood Chips into Feedstock Particles

Abstract We have an objective to convert cellulosic biomass raw materials into small particles that are optimized for biochemical and/or thermochemical conversion to liquid transportation fuels. As a side effort, we are interested in producing feedstocks for composite bioproducts, solid biofuels, and other uses. Wood chips that have a typical length of 50mm are a …

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Crumbles Pile

Low-Energy Comminution of Woody Biomass to Create Precision Feedstock Particles

Abstract  Under funding from DOE Office of Biomass Programs, engineers at Forest Concepts are working to apply low-energy comminution methods to produce improved biomass particle geometry and sizes optimal for biochemical and thermochemical conversion to liquid transportation fuels. Designs are constrained to concurrently achieve the DOE Uniform Feedstock Format criteria for bulk handling and flowability. …

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Simple experimental set up with EC meter, timer, and hot plate stirring device

Application of Buckmaster Electrolyte Ion Leakage Test to Woody Biofuel Feedstocks

Abstract In an earlier ASABE paper, Buckmaster reported that ion conductivity of biomass leachate in aqueous solution was directly correlated with activity access to plant nutrients within the biomass materials for subsequent biological or chemical processing. The Buckmaster test involves placing a sample of the particles in a beaker of constant-temperature deionized water and monitoring …

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Motor mount swing, torque arm, and force transducer

Torque-Arm Method to Measure Specific Energy in Laboratory Scale Biomass Preprocessing Equipment

Abstract  Specific energy for comminution and mechanical processing of lignocellulosic feedstocks provides an economically important basis to compare equipment and to provide data for lifecycle analysis of complete systems. Measurement of specific energy during equipment design and development activities enables optimization of design parameters. Forest Concepts developed a torque-arm apparatus and LabView data acquisition method …

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Crushed Roundwood

Modeling Energy Consumption for Crushing of Roundwood as a First Stage of Feedstock Preparation

Abstract  Our objective is to apply an understanding of the modes of failure and structural biology to substantially reduce the comminution energy required to produce bioenergy feedstocks. This paper explores the modes of failure for wood materials subject to crushing forces and how they could be used to develop a mathematical model of crushing forces …

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Poplar Crumbles

Protocol for Assessing Particle Shape of Comminuted Biomass

Abstract  Particle shape is increasingly important as a quality parameter for comminuted biomass. Shape affects flowability, pretreatment, rate of conversion, and performance of materials handling systems. This protocol applies to materials that have been subjected to commutation processes including but not limited to chunking, chipping, grinding or milling. Our objective is to enable a uniform …

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Baler Test 2008

Field Experience with Street Legal Square Baler for Woody Biomass

Abstract  We conducted a problem analysis in 2005 to recommend an optimal method for collection, transport, and handling of woody biomass in urban centers, suburban landscapes, and forested areas. The analysis concluded that street-legal biomass balers should replace tow-behind chippers to enable woody biomass to be packaged and handled just like other recyclables. Design and …

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