Biomass energy experts’ Talbotts is set to launch one of the most efficient wood-fuelled biomass generators on the market at this year’s W10 Working with Wood exhibition (3 – 6 October), at the NEC.
The new BG25 CHP (Combined Heat and Power) unit is believed to be a world-first, given the innovative way in which Talbotts has incorporated automotive technology in order to ensure continuous operation on a self-sustaining generating cycle.
Staffordshire-based Talbotts developed its new biomass generator in conjunction with the bio-energy team at nearby Harper Adams University College, which has significant expertise in both biomass and anaerobic digestion.
Talbotts’ Managing Director, Paul Firth, comments: "Our new turbocharged BG25 CHP generator uses readily-available waste biomass in the form of wood chips or pellets to generate consistent level of power, making it ideal for organisations in the wood working industry."
The system works by burning waste wood, in the form of pellets, in a combustor that generates hot air through a mile and a half of piping – packed into a compact heat exchanger – the hot air from which then powers a turbocharger, more usually found on Scania trucks.
Whilst much of this heat energy is cycled back through the compressor to charge fresh incoming air and continue to drive the turbocharger, excess energy is captured by a second turbocharger that drives two substantial alternators via a specially designed gearbox.
This self-contained system consistently and continuously generates 25 kilowatts of power, and recycles every ounce of excess energy within it, achieving unprecedented levels of overall efficiency and promising savings of 212 tonnes of CO2 pa.
By using rugged automotive components, the unit is highly durable, runs for long periods without significant servicing and can be repaired simply and easily, with parts readily available. In addition to electricity generation, the BG25 provides a source of local heating to the location receiving power.
Paul concludes: "The size of the CHP installation can power a hotel, large house, farm or modest industrial complex, but we are aiming to build units with significantly greater output, based on this technology. Nevertheless, we anticipate the market interest at this level will keep us pretty busy for the time being."
Talbotts Heating Ltd was first established in 1973, as a retailer of Italian-made log stoves during the OPEC oil crisis in the 1970s. Talbotts has since then evolved into the UK’s leading manufacturer of biomass-fuelled equipment for heating and power generation.
"This is a fantastic example of how businesses in the region are leading the way in new environmental solutions," comments Gareth Stanley, Environmental Technologies Cluster Manager for Advantage West Midlands. "It also shows how companies can gain significant competitive advantage by working in collaboration with leading academic institutions active in these fields, which we are fortunate to have several of in the West Midlands. I look forward to hearing about Talbotts’ success in the months and years to come."