Welcome to the Biomass conversion technologies database which you can access underneath! 

Through the underneath table users can access the database on lignocellulosic biomass conversion technologies characteristics (click on the number in last column). The data included in this database are feeding the Bio2Match, the BeWhere and the LocaGIStics tools all accessible via the main menu in this toolset under 'Tools'. accessible under the ‘Tool'  tab in the main menu above. In the process of creating the database it was ensured to take up the technologies relevant for producing the products described in the product market combinations in WP7 and that were the basis for assessing 2020 and 2030 biomass demand and consumption levels (see Tab 'General data' ---> 'Biomass demand'. For heat, power and fuels, several technologies are available in the database, while for other bio-based products (especially through the sugar platform) some but fewer conversion technologies are included. This is a representation of the technology readiness levels and the current and expected market situation for these products.

In the underneath table an overview is provided of all technologies included in the conversion technologies database. To access the detailed technology characterisation sheets in de database click on the technology number in the last column of the table.  To return to the overview table again click on the return arrow

The technologies covered can be classified in 6 main categories: treatment in subcritical water, syngas platform, gasification technologies, fast pyrolysis, direct combustion of solid biomass, chemical pretreatment, biochemical hydrolisis and fermentation and anearobic digestion. For a further description of the biomass conversion technologies database please consult D2.3The method developed in S2BIOM for minimal biomass quality requirement for each biomass conversion technology is described in D2.1 and  D2.2.

Conversion technologies Conversion technologies


View details of HTC Hydrothermal carbonisation of biowaste to coal for CHP

Name HTC Hydrothermal carbonisation of biowaste to coal for CHP
Main category Treatment in subcritical water
Subcategory Hydrothermal processing
Image url http://www.ava-co2.com/web/media/archive_foto/ava_co2_pict_008_big.jpg
Year of first implementation 2010
Estimated number of systems in operation 2
Main operating principle:
Organic municipal waste from food preparation and gardening with a typical composition of 60 to 70% water and about 15% ash is minced and heated with steam to about 180 to 250 °C at 10 bar. The biomass is converted to HTC biocoal by elimination of chemically bonded water from carbohydrates (dehydratisation). After several hours the pressure is released in an expansion vessel leading to a separation of wet biocoal and steam. The steam is used to start the exothermal reaction in the next reactor in a multiple-batch system. During HTC all soluble salts are solved and found to a high share in aqueous solution after the reaction. This lowers the content of e.g. potassium and chlorine in HTC coal which increases the ash melting temperatures from about 700 °C to 1200 °C for organic waste based biocoal. Low K+ and Cl- content allow combustion of non-wood biomass in power plants because slagging and corrosion problems are avoided. The wet biocoal can be filter-pressed to a water content of 50 to 60 %, reducing efforts for transport and drying. The HTC process has an energetic conversion efficiency of 75 % from organic waste to biocoal.

Level of commercial application Commercial available
Important pilots and EU projects BioBoost, BioConSept, R3WATER, SteamBio
Expected Developments
Current Technology Readiness Level Level 7, Integrated pilot system demonstrated
Expected Technology Readiness Level in 2030 Level 9, System ready for full scale deployment
Justify expected Level in 2030
BioBoost deliverables retrievable under www.bioboost.eu D6.4 Energy Carrier Chain LCA (Authors: Ileana Hernandez Mireles, Arjan van Horssen, Toon van Harmelen, Esther Hagen, TNO) D6.2 Solid Energy Carrier Combustion (Authors: Manoj Paneru, Jörg Maier University Stuttgart) D4.3 BioBoost Logistic Model (Authors: Gabriel Kronberger, Erik Pitzer, Fchhochschule Oberösterreich)

Capacity of outputs (typical values)
Biocoal                      (tonnes/hour) 2.1     LHV  (GJ / m3) 21
Conversion efficiencies: net returns biofuels and biobased products(GJ/GJ biomass input) typical: 75 min: 60 max: 76   typical in 2020: 75 typical in 2030: 80  

Data sources used to define conversion efficiencies in 2014:
Comment: Biocoal output refers to TONNE, it is 21 GJ/t Source: BioBoost Del. 6.4 LCA and economic assessment
External inputs (not generated by the biomass in the conversion process)
Power     (kW): 203
Heat (useful, not process steam)     (kW): 1921

Indication: experience based data Yes

Number of possible full load hours per year (hours) 8000
Number of typical full load hours per year (hours)
Typical Lifetime of Equipment (years) 25
Data sources used to define conversion efficiencies in 2020:

Data sources used to define conversion efficiencies in 2030:

General data sources for technical properties:
Comment on heat: Process steam, 2,75 MJ/kg BioBoost Del 6.4

Biomass input, common for the technology used:    Separately collected biowaste: Biodegradable waste of separately collected municipal  waste (excluding textile and paper), Biodegradable municipal waste;  Biowaste as part of integrally collected municipal waste: Biodegradable waste of not separately collected municipal waste (excluding textile and paper), Biodegradable municipal waste;    Other by-products and residues from food and fruit processing industry, By-products and residues from food and fruit processing industry; 
Biomass input, technically possible but not common:    Unused grassland cuttings (abandoned grassland, managed grasslands not used for feed) , Grassland;  Maize stover, Straw/stubbles;  Sugarbeet leaves, Straw/stubbles;  Rice straw, Straw/stubbles; 
Traded form Other (Black liquor, BMW, PO etc.)
Dimensions Not applicable

Moisture content (% wet basis) typical 70 max 85
Minimal bulk density (kg/m3, wet basis) 100
Maximum ash content (% dry basis) 60
Minimal ash melting point (= initial deformation temperature) (°C) 0
Volatile matter (only for thermally trated material, torrefied or steam explosed) (VM%)

Maximum allowable contents
Nitrogen, N (wt%, dry) 5 Sulphur, S (wt%, dry) 3 Chlorine, Cl (wt%, dry) 2
Optional attributes
Net caloric value (MJ/kg) min max
Gross caloric value (MJ/kg) min 8 max 20
Biogas yield (m3 gas/ton dry biomass) % methane
Cellulose content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Hemicellulose content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Lignin content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Crude fibre content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Starch content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Sugar content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Fat content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Protein content (g/kg dry matter) min max
Acetyl group content (g/kg dry matter) min max

Investments costs in 2014 (€): 14000000 expected in 2020 (€): expected in 2030 (€):
Labour needed Operators (FTE): Staff and engineering (FTE): 8

Edited by: Klaus Lenz