Energy Cost of Charcoal
Bryce Nordgren, (Rev) March 26, 2009

Because I really had no idea about how much energy it takes to make
charcoal, I made a table from the specs of the Chinese equipment posted by
gordon eliot. Then I calculated the "Energy Cost" of each component in
(MJ/kg). Finally I aggregated the energy costs from the "suggested
charcoal plants" to get an idea of the energy cost of the entire system.
Note that all of their plants use the new high efficiency coal bar
machine. This should represent a best case scenario: maximum rated
charcoal production at rated power. If you make less charcoal and consume
the same power, the energy cost goes up.

Consider this a first step in understanding the energy efficiency of the
entire process. To complete the analysis, we would have to know the energy
content (MJ/kg) of the produced charcoal. The big question is: can you
power a 30kW generator with the syngas in order to take the small charcoal
plant off the grid?


A charcoal production plant that also generates heat and electricity from the by-product gas
Biofuel Energy Sustems, Sustainable Energy Ltd., UK, 2004
BES Carbonizer

In 2004 Biofuel Energy Systems Ltd. developed a plant for charcoal production, which uses the gases given off during production to drive a gas turbine, generating heat and electricity. The electricity generated can be used on site (especially useful in remote areas with no electrical grid connection) or sold back to the grid for additional profit.


Carbonized Rice Hull
Courtesy, September 28,2008

Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice)Rice Technology Bulletin, No. 47, 2005

PhilRice Open Type
PhilRice Open Type

trace affiliate link | adidas NMD Human Race


A handy kiln for making charcoal from urban leaf litter
Appropriate Rural Technology Institute (ARTI), Pune, India

Single Barrel Charcoal Kiln

Single Barrel Charcoal Kiln


Chaotech Pty Ltd.
Rex Manderson [], Australia, July 2008

BiogasWorks PilotBiogasWorks Pilot

This site 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


Casmance Kiln

Benjamin Domingo, Argentian, April 29, 2008


jordan Sneakers | Nike Little Posite Pro USA CZ2520-600 Release Date - SBD


Simple charcoal kiln
Folke Gunther, April 24, 2008

A wonderfully simple method for making charcoal at home or on the allotment.



There is a wide demand for charcoal kilns to be used by anybody having an allotment or garden sized plot. The idea of making char of surplus biomass instead of firing it is widely spread in Latin America (and Japan?). Burning the pyrolysis gasses instead of emitting them makes the method comparatively safe, although not efficient regarding their potential utilisation of gasses.

I agree that his is a very small scale method, bu imagine 2 billion people having it, making 1 kg char a week for their lots. That would imply about 0.1 Gt annually, or 5% of what would be necessary to sequester for making a change.

Naturally, this is not the method to save the world from entering a tipping point, but it could well be of some help.

Pyrolysis Reactor Tower Assembly
Sean Barry, April 21, 2008

I assembled the Pyrolysis Reactor Tower today. I had it fabricated over the winter.



affiliate link trace | Nike - Shoes & Sportswear Clothing


Sewage Sludge Charcoal
Michael Antal,University of Hawaii, April 2008
Sewage Sludge Charcoal
Sewage Sludge Charcoal

I am pleased and somewhat surprised to report that raw sewage sludge is a good feedstock for charcoal production. Details are available on the HNEI website below.
Flash Carbonization

Regards, Michael.

Michael J. Antal, Jr.
Coral Industries Distinguished Professor of Renewable Energy Resources
Hawaii Natural Energy Institute
POST 109, 1680 East-West Rd.
Honolulu, HI 96822

phone: 808/956-7267
fax: 808/956-2336



Subscribe to Carbonization