Blackwood Technology is a Dutch renewable energy company, focusing on the torrefaction of biomass. Blackwood’s leading and award-winning torrefaction technology was proven at industrial scale in a demonstration plant in the Netherlands. Torrefied pellets produced by Blackwood’s technology have been successfully co-fired in large scale European power plants as well as in smaller scale CHPs. Blackwood is planning a worldwide roll-out of its technology through a licensing model. As part of this strategy, Blackwood has signed a licensing agreement with South African utility Eskom for the construction of torrefaction plants in the SADC region.
In energy generation, torrefaction enables the use of a wide variety of feedstocks, reduces logistics costs, and lowers capex and opex at power and heating plants for handling and burning biofuel. Today, torrefied biomass is applicable for (co-)firing in large power plants as well as for decentralized heating applications. In the future, torrefaction creates the opportunity to accelerate the use of biomass in industrial applications and as a feedstock for large-scale gasification to produce biobased chemicals and materials.
Blackwood’s technology is the leading industrial scale torrefaction technology in the world. This technology was developed by Topell Energy from 2008-2015, and demonstrated at Topell Energy’s demo plant in Duiven, the Netherlands.
The team of Blackwood has extensive experience with torrefaction. All its engineers were involved in the engineering, construction, commissioning and operation of the Topell Energy demo plant.
Blackwood’s mission is to roll-out its cutting edge torrefaction technology on a global scale. In order to achieve this, the company’s strategy is based on a technology licensing model. To accelerate the deployment of Blackwood based torrefaction plants, the company is working with a partnership model.
Background Topell Energy
Topell Energy was founded in 2008 and developed a cutting edge patent-protected process for the torrefaction of biomass. Its technology was proven at industrial scale at its own demo plant in the Netherlands. The company was financed by utility backed VC investors Innogy Venture Capital and Yellow & Blue and a Dutch regional investment fund PPM Oost.
Topell’s technology has been recognized as a key enabling technology to unlock the industrial potential of biomass. The company has therefore received awards from institutions including the Cleantech Group, the World Economic Forum, Bloomberg New Energy Finance and the World Wildlife Fund.
In 2013 it achieved its proof-of-technology when it was able to produce torrefied pellets from forest residues in its demo plant at industrial scale (6 ton/hr). In Q4 of 2013 it sucessfully completed a large scale co-firing test in a consortium with three major European utilities, RWE Essent, Nuon Vattenfall and GDF SUEZ (now Engie).