United States based Zilkha Biomass Energy LLC and Finnish company Valmet Corporation, a leading global developer and supplier of services and technologies for the pulp, paper and energy industries, have signed a five-year collaboration agreement to bring steam exploded black pellets to the market. The pellets are principally used for replacing fossil coal as the energy source in heat and power generation. The parties will work together to develop a joint global offering.
“Valmet’s network will provide a great channel for introducing manufacturers to the advantages of the Zilkha Black Pellet,” says Jack Holmes, CEO of Zilkha Biomass Energy. “Through this collaboration, we are partnering with a well-established technology and equipment supplier to offer advanced solutions for the growing biomass market. We are very excited about this arrangement.”
Environmentally friendly alternative
The market for steam exploded black pellets is expected to grow rapidly in coming years as the pressure to replace fossil fuels with sustainable environmentally friendly alternatives is getting stronger, according to Rickard Andersson, Vice President, Bio Technology and Environmental Systems, Pulp and Energy Business Line, Valmet. “Combining Zilkha’s deep know-how in pellet production and distribution with Valmet’s project capabilities brings great opportunities to develop and exploit a new emerging technology,” says Andersson.
According to Valmet, steam exploded black pellets provide a number of benefits compared to traditional wood pellets. These include improved durability, water-resistance, higher energy content, lower shipping costs, and reduced dust problems compared to other types of bio-based pellets. The pellets can be handled in a similar manner to fossil coal, which significantly reduces, or even removes, the need for expensive investments in logistics and plant rebuilds.