Canadian Biomass Magazine

Battelle awarded SSMIC bioenergy project

July 2, 2014

July 2, 2014, Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. – The Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC), has announced that its bio-based technology request for proposal (RFP) has been awarded to Battelle.

July 2,
2014, Sault Ste. Marie,
Ont. – The 
Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC), has
announced that its bio-based technology request for proposal (RFP) has been
awarded to Battelle. 


The purpose of the RFP was to attract a wood-based bioenergy
project to the Sault, potentially leading to the construction of a commercial
or demonstration plant in the city, which will stimulate local economic growth
and create jobs. The region has access to ample and sustainable wood supply
from Northern Ontario forests and this project will utilize the renewable
supply of biofibre feedstock in the area.



Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, Battelle is the world’s
largest non-profit research and development organization, with more than 22,000
employees at 130 locations globally.


Battelle will develop a business case and implementation
plan for the installation of a pyrolysis plant in the region. The proposed
plant would process 20 dry tons of biomass per day to produce bio-oil, which
will be converted by a partner organization to produce 10.5 million pounds of
bio-polyol per year, which alternatively can be used to produce an average of ¾
MW of electric power to the Sault Ste. Marie transmission grid.


The bio-polyol will be sold to produce foams, insulation,
coatings, and other high-margin commercial products.


“Battelle is honored and excited by the opportunity to work
with SSMIC on bringing bio-based pyrolysis to the Sault Ste. Marie community,”
said Kathya Mahadevan, Alternative Energy Business Line Manager, Battelle. “The
development of bio-based energy to help communities thrive is a reflection of
what Battelle does best. With an abundant supply of feedstock and our small
scale pyrolysis technology, we’re confident in the reality of a sustainable and
productive plant.”


As discussed in the Smart Energy Strategy, biomass has been
a large driver for the Sault’s economy for decades and the current reality is
that when it comes to energy, the Sault and surrounding region has a wide mix of
potential options available. Until now there hasn’t been clear direction
on the use of biomass resources and progress in the area.


Jason Naccarato, vice president of development for SSMIC
says, “The Smart Energy Strategy emphasized the potential of attracting
bioenergy projects as one of the seven strategic pillars to the plan. This
initial project is an important step in realizing our vision to develop new,
bio-based industries in the region, that create new jobs and business


SSMIC received five strong proposals from companies
worldwide. A committee comprised of forestry, biotechnology, business and
economic development experts reviewed the proposals.


If the project proceeds to plant implementation, the
proposed system would create an estimated 33 local jobs and diversify the local


Kathya Mahadevan of Battelle is also scheduled as one of the
sector experts to speak at the upcoming Energy Opportunities Conference,
November 4-6, 2014 at Algoma’s Water Tower Inn.

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