About the project
Torrefaction is a process used to produce high-grade solid biofuels from various streams of woody biomass or agro residues. The end product is a stable, homogeneous, high quality biofuel with far greater energy density and calorific value than the original feedstock, providing significant benefits in logistics, handling and storage, as well as opening up a wide range of potential uses.
Torrefaction is a thermal process that involves heating the biomass (wood chips) to temperatures between 250 and 300 degrees Celsius in an inert atmosphere. When biomass is heated at such temperatures, the moisture evaporates and various low-calorific components contained in the biomass are driven out. During this process the hemi-cellulose in the biomass decomposes which transforms the biomass from a fibrous material into a product with excellent fuel characteristics.
Instrumatics was commissioned to supply a full range of instrumentation to accurately monitor various stages of the plant. Instruments were required to monitor Level Measurement of wood-chips that are supplied to the plant. Due to the low dielectric constant, this media is traditionally very hard to measure, however the VEGA radar transmitters provide level measurement well within client expectations. The sensors manage the changing average height of wood chips to provide reliable measurements to the controllers. Instrumatics supplied several temperature sensors with unique process fittings and varying sizes. These are operating flawlessly within the process with highly repeatable signals. All instrumentation is controlled by a Touchscreen panel supplied as part of the package. The panel was designed, built and commissioned by the team at Instrumatics to control the main plant and send vital information to the main PLC Centre. Remote access is provided by communication modules which were pre-configured and supplied at the manufacture stage. The specification demanded very accurate measurements to ensure the plant operate at optimum efficiency. Instrumatics was chosen not only for supply of leading-edge products but also for technical expertise to develop, commission and maintain the plant control mechanisms.