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Torrefied wood pellets are much darker than the compressed-sawdust pellets I burn at home.
Friday, November 2, 2012

A Maine plant to make "torrefied wood"? I didn't know what it is, either

Maine has so many trees that forest-products industries are old hat. This the only explanation I can think of for why a well-reported story in the Bangor Daily News titled "Prep work under way at Millinoket torrefied wood facility" waits until the 11th of 13 paragraphs to tell us what "torrefied wood" is:

A type of microwaved wood pellet that burns as hot as coal without coal’s pollutants, torrefied wood burns about 30 percent hotter than typical wood pellets.

Here's more of an explanation from New Biomass Energy. Basically, it's a method to cook out more moisture and volatile compounds from wood so it burns better and with less pollution. the resulting pellets are lighter per BTU, and are "practical to co-fire in existing coal plants," a big plus for the industry.

Now we know, too.