Torrefaction: Picture - Machine #2 - 8/14/08
Joseph J. James, Agri-Tech Producers, LLC, August 15, 2008

Agri-tech Machine #2
Agri-tech Machine #2

Colleagues:

As most of you know, we are commercializing a unique form of torrefaction technology, developed by NC State University (NCSU). This process will densify, add value to, improve the characteristics of woody biomass, making it a much better feedstock for which to co-fire with coal, make superior pellets and briquettes and to use in gasifier operations. It also allows treated biomass to be shipped more economically and for greater distances.

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Exhaust Carbonization with 12/1 Listeroid
Rolf, Energies Naturales, August 15, 2008
Exhaust Carbonization
Exhaust Carbonization: Exchanger screws into cyl. head left side, muffler comes on the right

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Hallo friends of black magic,
just to make shure it works (or not) I made a little experiment in exhaust carbonization of granulated biomass .

It is a " quick and dirty " one ,I must admit but it gives a qualitative insight.

I run a 12/1 Listeroid on pure old veg oil. It puts out typically 2.5 kW el at 750 rpm, perhaps 1/3 load. The exhaust temp is around 360

Invader Bush Namibia
Tom Miles, August 2008

Invader Bush

Thorn bush is one of many invading bush species in Southern Africa. This bush is currently made into charcoal and in one location cleared to preserve habitat. The photo above is from the Chameleon Bush Encroachment Wiki created to help resource managers control the bush. Highlight the photo to see an album of photos showing the invader bush and chips recovered from clearing.

Principal species shown are sicklebush (Dichrostachys cinerea), blacktorn (Acacia mellifera), Mopane (Colophospermum mopane). Other principal species are yellow bark acacia (Acacia erubescens), red thorn or false umbrella thorn (Acacia reficiens),and to the South, three thorn Rhigozum (Rhigozum trichotomum).

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Wood ash admixture to organic wastes improves compost and its performance
T. Kuba , A. Tscholl , C. Partl, K. Meyer, H. Insam
Agriculture, Ecosystems, Environment Vol 127 (1-2), August 2008 pp 43-49

A B S T R A C T
Throughout Europe, increasing amounts of wood ash are produced from biomass incineration plants. Most of these ashes are currently landfilled, despite their nutrient and micronutrient contents. The aim of this research was to find a way to return wood ash from biomass incineration plants into the natural cycle
of matter. Three composts from source separated organic waste were produced with 0%, 8% and 16% ash admixture. The composting process was monitored by in situ measurements of temperature and CO2 concentration in the windrows. Maturation of the composts was observed through the parameters basal respiration, microbial biomass,metabolic quotient, Corg, Ntot, C/N-ratio and plant growth tests with cress.

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Bear Kaufmann. Initially posted April 7, 2008. Updated August 5, 2008.

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A handy kiln for making charcoal from urban leaf litter
Appropriate Rural Technology Institute (ARTI), Pune, India www.arti-india.org

Single Barrel Charcoal Kiln

Single Barrel Charcoal Kiln

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Biochar and Fertilization Blog
AJ Morris, July 2008

About this Site:

Welcome to Biochar and Fertilization: Civilization

David Yarrow: Confronting our Climate Change Challenge the Biochar Strategy
David Yarrow, July 28, 2008

I've revised my powerpoint illustrations for my "confronting our climate change challenge" talk about carbon-negative biochar strategy. They are now available as auto-running powerpoint slide shows, with "click to continue" prompts. I saved them in the version 1997-2003 format, although I created them with the new vista 2007 version.

The full set of 47 slides is a 20mb powerpoint file. I divided this into 9 smaller files of 1.4mb to 3.5mb:

1_Climate Change Introduction - 13 slides -- 2.1mb

2_Terra Preta History 1 - 5 slides -- 3.4mb

3_Terra Preta Research 1 - 3 slides -- 3.5mb

3_Terra Preta Research 2 - 6 slides -- 3.2mb

Sustainable Technology: Biochar
Julie Major, Workshop presented to Sustainable Harvest International,Honduras, January 2008

Reported in La Cosecha (The Harvest), Sustainable Harvest International newsletter, Spring 2008, p. 4.

Black is the New Green: SHI Field Staff Learn the Benefits of Biochar for Agriculture

During the annual Board and staff meeting held in January in Honduras, field staff from Honduras, Nicaragua, Belize and Panama attended a workshop presented by Julie Major of Cornell University on managing soils with biochar. Biochar can be made simply and cheaply from any organic material, just by piling it, covering it up with soil to exclude air and setting it on fire. During the workshop biochar was made from rice hulls and pieces of pine wood for demonstration, but any crop residue or plant waste can be used to make biochar, such as coffee pulp, sawdust, sugarcane bagasse, etc.

Sustainable Harvest International
http://www.sustainableharvest.org/

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Floating char
Max Henderson, Australia, July 27, 2008
Floating Char
Floating Char

8 Weeks Floating Char
8 Weeks Floating Char

Couple of photos 6 weeks apart. Bucket is 20 litres. Added
to the water has been some pee, cow poo and a tablespoon of molasses.
First photo was 2 weeks after adding the char, second is 6
weeks later.

Approx 80% of the char has now sunk. The rest looks like sinking in another fortnight.
The sunken char is much easier to break (in one hand) than the material still in dry storage.

This char was produced at high temp

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Health Soils for Sustainable Farming Proceedings July 2007
Australia.
http://lwa.gov.au/files/products/healthy-soils-sustainable-farms/pn30193...

Farming soils in the southern agricultural region of Western Australia

Chaotech Pty Ltd.
Rex Manderson [rexm@chaotech.com.au], Australia, July 2008

BiogasWorks PilotBiogasWorks Pilot

This site www.biogasworks.com is the portal for the carbon cycle activities of Chaotech Pty Ltd.

Our slow carbonization pilot plant is now rated 40 to 60kg charcoal per hour for lightweight feed such as sawdust. The specification particle size limit is 8mm largest dimension. Process simulations have produced a yield of ~40% char on a dry mass basis with ~80% total carbon content in the char.

See: Biogas works

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I was surprised that there were no how to's for charcoal productions without the need for kilns, drums etc, so thought this might be of interest to some as a trial technique. It is not very efficient by way of volume of charcoal to volume of biomass to start, but can be useful if you have quantities of garden waste such as prunings, bark, leaves etc. This type of stuff normally goes into green waste, or needs chipping to compost or use as mulch as it is too big for compost bin.

This is a process I have used which requires only an open fire or fire pit, shovel or rake and water (hose or steel buckets with water). It is a minor modification of the techniques used when cooking using the camp oven - which only uses coals instead of flame. Instead of transferring the coals to the oven pit, they are wetted down to stop burning, and create charcoal.

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The multiplication factor
Richard Douthwaite, richard@douthwaite.net, July 5, 2008

Dear All:

Everyone on this list subscribes because he or she believes that biochar has the potential to ease the climate crisis. But how great is that potential? It seems pretty clear that we will never be able to bury enough biochar each year to match the amount of fossil carbon being taken out of the earth. In any case, what would be the point? Instead of digging up coal and burning it we could burn the biochar instead.

So biochar's potential usefulness depends on what I call the multiplication factor - the amount by which the incorporation of biochar in the soil either leads to more carbon being sequestered or prevents the release of greenhouse gases that would have been emitted had it not been put in the soil. Let's look at these in turn.

1. Additional carbon sequestration.

Australian Biochars
Jerome Matthews, June 21, 2008
Australian BiocharsAustralian Biochars

Hi There,

We are commercial suppliers of biochars and just thought that you may be interested as we don't think that anyone else is yet producing to our levels. We're happy to receive queries.

You may find us at http://www.biochars.com

Best regards.

Jerome Matthews

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Puzzle
Max Henderson, June 15, 2008

Floating Char
Floating Char
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New address to the simple kiln
Folke G

More Trial Data With Explanatory Photos
Max Henderson May 26, 2008
Kiln ExternalKiln External
Kiln Fire Under DrumKiln Fire Under Drum

First is from the front of the kiln just after the fire was lit and before bricks were added across the front. The drum lid is held in place with an over-centre clamp. The side and rear bricks have been moved in to touch the drum to improve insulation.

Second is through a hole in the front brickwork, shortly after the gas started to flow. There are two fire layers

Gardening with Biochar FAQ (Wiki)
Philip Small, May 21, 2008

Welcome to a Gardening with Biochar FAQ!
... a work in progress...

When gardeners add biochar to garden soil, we are, in effect attempting to follow in the footsteps of the originators of Terra Preta. Because we don't know exactly how that process worked, nor how we can best adapt it outside its area of origin, we are left to discover much of this by experimenting with our own gardens and comparing observations within our own communities.

See:

Gardening with Biochar FAQ (Wiki)

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Robert Flanagan, May 22, 2008
Attached are some photos of my latest trial with char (biochar/agrichar ). I achieved the above results with charcoal made
from willow and miscanthus at over 550C.
In the attached photos I just added the
char to local soil with no other additions.

1g Charcoal per seed
1g Charcoal per seed

50g Miscanthus Charcoal per pot
50g Miscanthus Charcoal per pot

Agriculture Carbon Trading

David Yarrow, May 21, 2008

spent all day at a workshop on trading carbon credits for agriculture at the albany county cooperative extension office. the workshop was targeted for government staff and educators who advise farmers, and farmers themselves. it seems this is a step in the complex process of gearing up for RGGI (www.rggi.org) -- the regional greenhouse gas
initiative cap and trade carbon exchange involving 10 northeast & mid-atlantic states -- which will be implemented beginning 2009. considerable effort was required to get complete agreement from all 10 states on standards, protocols and policies, but the system is open to admit new states.

Primeval Forest Mining
Folke Gunther, May 21, 2008

Spreadsheet for Calculating Basic "New Terra Preta" Economics

Spreadsheet for Calculating Basic Biochar Economics Kevin Chisholm, May 13, 2008

Knowing soil density, the density of "loose charcoal" as it will be applied to the soil, the density of crushed charcoal, the depth of the original soil into which the charcoal will be tilled in, and a proposed weight addition per square meter, we can then calculate the average depth of charcoal on the surface of the ground after placing, and the weight percentage of charcoal that will exist, after the charcoal is tilled in to the desired depth.

More Trials
Max Henderson,May 12, 2008

If you can bear with me here is some info from last weekend

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In Our state We are having 70% Forest .Mainly Pine forest in every summer it is cause of forest fire . We face huge loss of trees, properties and life too.This is cost to Forest department . We develop the method to convert pine needle into CHARCOAL BRIQUETTE. Which use as cooking fuel. Now they are not cutting the tree for fuel.Save the forest use this method. This low cost method. for rural area. Apart of that it is produce local emplyment. Get the chrcoal with cutting tree.Like

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