Valmet to deliver world’s first continuous steam explosion system for black pellets

Valmet
September 24, 2018
Written by Valmet
Sept. 24, 2018 - Valmet has agreed with FICAP on the delivery of the world's first continuous steam explosion system, BioTrac, for production of black pellets.

FICAP is a renewable company owned by the investment funds Meridiam and Caisse des Depots associated to Europenne de Biomasse that developed the project and the HPCI-Black Pellet technology. The black pellet plant will be part of an existing large industrial area, located in the Region of Champagne-Ardenne in France. The integration of the BioTrac system and plant will be conducted by De Smet Engineers and Contractors (DSEC) of Belgium.

The order is included in Valmet's second quarter of 2018 orders received. The value of the order will not be disclosed. The start-up of the black pellet production plant is planned for 2020.

The pellet plant will produce both white and black pellets and has an annual capacity of 120 000 ton/year of pellets. The black pellets produced will be used mainly by district heating network operators and coal fired power plants as a substitute to fossil fuels. This project will therefore contribute to the phase out from fossil fuels and enable the production of 100 per cent renewable energy.

"FICAP is our first industrial project, a concrete showcase of our know-how and mastery of biomass industrialization processes and technology, responding to a promising emerging market of the HPCI Black Pellet. Its success will allow the global roll-out of a new biofuel industrial sector in France, Europe and the rest of the world," says Jean Baptiste Marin, CEO of Européenne de Biomasse.

"Valmet has since 2013 focused on the commercialization of the BioTrac process and we are very happy to finally see the first project to be realized. This is the first of its kind of a continuous steam explosion system for this application. We see a great future in this end product and process. We strongly believe this important project will pave the way for many more projects for supply of black pellets not only in France but also in other European countries. We also see a growing demand in markets such as Japan," says Mattias Erixon, Manager Sales, Biomass Conversion at Valmet.

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