Canadian Biomass Magazine

Audits for pellet plant operations

May 11, 2015
By FutureMetrics

May 11, 2015 - Is your pellet plant is underperforming? FutureMetrics can help you determine what the problems are and how to correct them.

FutureMetrics can help you make informed decisions to improve your pellet plant’s manufacturing performance, safety and maintenance protocols, production reliability, product quality and, of course, profit margins.

FutureMetrics provides you with an independent comprehensive report that benchmarks the plant’s production efficiency, quality control, safety issues, and plant maintenance. The report details the good and the bad and has specific and detailed suggestions for how to improve the operation.

FutureMetrics’ operations audits are supervised by senior associate John Swaan. Swaan has many years of experience providing plant operations audits for dozens of plants in Canada, the U.S., Europe and New Zealand.   

The FutureMetrics team offers up-to-date knowledge of industry best practices for consistently, efficiently, and reliably converting many species of woody biomass into high-quality wood pellets.


Since plant operations personnel and management may have limited opportunity to learn about constantly evolving industry best practices, draw upon the team’s 20-plus years of experience and its dedication to continuously updating its knowledge of how to make a pellet.

The operations audit includes:

•A review of the process flow of the plant:
◦Woodyard/feedstock and infeed management.
◦Woody biomass size reduction at each stage of the process.
◦Moisture level monitoring and control at each stage of the process.
◦Fibre drying efficiencies.
◦Buffer points (or lack thereof) in the process.
◦The pelletizing process; fibre preparation and presentation to the pellet mill(s), die and roller configuration.
◦Wood pellet cooling (conditioning).
◦Conveyance systems and design.
◦Fire, explosion and safety preparedness of a plant.
◦Preventative maintenance and regular maintenance of the plant.

•Review of the process control systems and the degree of automation and operational friendliness of the plant.

•Review of the training, knowledge level, and operational methods of the plant’s personnel; from shift workers through to the operations management.

•Review of the communications and reporting systems.

To learn more, email or call 207-824-6702.

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