Canadian Biomass Magazine

Virtual Event
WPAC Conference & AGM 2020 – Day 1
September 22, 2020 at 11:00am ET

On DEMAND (7 minutes)
Best Practices in Managing Combustible Gas

Video: WPAC, BC Forest Safety Council and UBC Biomass and Bioenergy Research Group

Video content by WPAC, BC Forest Safety Council and UBC Biomass and Bioenergy Research Group

Wood pellet plants produce syngas – a highly explosive mix of carbon monoxide, methane, hydrogen and other volatiles – during various stages of the pellet manufacturing process. This combustible gas is produced whenever biomass is subjected to high temperatures in a low-oxygen environment. It often accumulates within enclosed areas such as dryers, ducts, cyclones and piping. If not managed properly, syngas can cause catastrophic fires, explosions and deflagrations and resultant injuries, loss of life and equipment. This phenomenon is equally true for woody and agricultural biomass.

This video describes how and where combustible gas will accumulate during the pellet manufacturing process. It gives recommendations for reducing risk such as the use of back-up power during power outages to maintain extraction fans, considerations for plant design, the locations and components that need to be inspected and cleaned regularly to avoid syngas build-up, the use of monitoring and alarm systems and operator training.

The video takes just seven minutes to watch and is packed with vital information. We encourage everyone involved in wood pellet manufacturing to take the time to view it as part of our collective comment to a safer wood pellet industry.

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