Carbonex
http://www.carbonex.fr/

Carbonex in Gye-sur-Seine in Aube, Champagne-Ardenne, France uses locally sourced wood and modern wood processing and pyrolysis equipment to make high quality lump charcoal and renewable energy.

They started 20 years ago, with charcoal making, but in 2012 installed a newly designed, much more efficient cogeneration pyrolizer that consumes fewer resources, creates great charcoal and generates energy for the grid. They use locally sourced wood, and in 2013 they received the National Stars & Métiers 2013 Prize for Global Strategic Innovation.

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Bioenergy Earth Systems,
Melbourne, Australia

The proof of concept, Earth Systems’ CharMaker – Mobile Pyrolysis Plant (MPP 20 and MPP 40) is a ship-abple batch pyrolysis unit primarily designed for woody biomass.

The mobile unit was developed for the North East Catchment Management Authority (NECMA) as part of with the support of the Victorian Government.

The mobile unit has been used to try out more than 20 feedstocks to make both conventional charcoal and Biochar.

For more information about Bioenergy Earth Systems, and the Earth Systems Charmaker see http://www.esenergy.com.au/

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Announcing an exciting new biochar learning opportunity
More info and registration coming soon!

  • 5 days of learning and experimentation at Swallow Valley Farm in Sonoma County, California
  • Produced by Wilson Biochar Associates, New England Biochar, LLC and Biocarbon Associates
  • Co-sponsored by US Biochar Initiative, Sonoma Biochar Initiative, Southern California Biochar Initiative and others TBA

Sign up at: http://biocharschool.brownpapertickets.com/
- See more at: http://greenyourhead.typepad.com/biochar_school/#sthash.SQoSrFGa.dpuf

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"THE HYBRID" A Bio-Energy Converter Converting Biomass to Heat Energy and Biochar using pyrolysis and gasification in a self sustaining converter.

Stationary and Mobile Units

  • A BIO-ENERGY CONVERTER with the flexibilty to be site specific to fit your actual application.
  • Converts biomass,(wood chips, coconut shells, peach pits), into a value-added product, biochar.
  • Supplies heat to your home, farm, or greenhouse with the ability to produce 500,000 BTU/hr of heat energy.
  • Continuous feed system.
  • Project feasibility and plant layout design available.
  • Makes cents while heating your home!
Super Vegetable Garden field Application
Por Natura Pyrolizer
Pro Natura Village Workshops

Pro-Natura has been working in the Ivory Coast with farmers on the edges of the natural parks there to discover ways of helping the farmers cultivate food for local markets and for their families and provide incentives for increased biodiversity.

In the areas where they work, old cocoa and coffee plantations are often not renewed because of of the threats of disease and soil exhaustion. Additionally, full sun cocoa varieties encourage cutting down all of the trees which suppresses biodiversity. (Biodiversity is important to maintaining the health of native species, but it's also important to maintain disease resistance in the crops that these families' lives depend on).

Biochar applied to the topsoil of the trees at the rate of 1kg per square meter have increased crop yields by 50% to 200%. Trials have also shown that trees grown in 5 - 10% biochar soils are more disease resistant, specifically to phytophthora, a family of pathogens that includes Monilia or black pod. Black pod has devastated whole swathes of cocoa growing regions, which has spurred the abandoning of older cocoa plantations.

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Matt Kieffer is presenting a web seminar titled "Biochar and Beyond" as part of the Bioenergy Friday Web Seminar series, sponsored by the University of Nebraska Lincoln Extension

For morn information, and to sign go to:
http://www.engineering.iastate.edu/events/biochar-topic-of-web-seminar-b...

Bill has been working developing TLUD greenhouse and home heaters for a project in Mexico where the plan to use pecan shells for heating applications, and use the biochar to help restore soil fertility. He's done a nice job designing the fan system to detect the heat inside the burner and buzz to remind the user to pay attention to the stove when the fuel canister needs attention.

Bill has also developed a comal style stove top for the TLUD stove that can use pecan shells, wood chips, or other crop residues for cooking.

The TLUD designs that are the basis for the combustion component of this stove are found here: http://www.drtlud.com

Biochar Bob highlights a project near DC where they are using biochar in a wetland restoration project to filter pollutants out of run-off and restore natural water infiltration to that neighborhood.

For more videos from Biochar Bob see his YouTube channel:
https://www.youtube.com/user/BiocharBob

Refertil is a project using agricultural by-products to create high quality natural fertilizers for use in farming. It has a strong testing-analytical data-gathering, and they've been creating and optimizing both compost and biochar to develop good zero-emissions alternatives to current agricultural pratices.

The project objectives:

The REFERTIL is an application oriented science and technology development project contributing to the cost efficient transformation of the organic waste streams from the agriculture and food industry. The key objectives of the REFERTIL project are to improve the currently used compost treatment systems and develop zero emission performance biochar industrial production technologies towards safe and economical nutrient recovery process. Beyond the industrial compost and stabile carbon based biochar technology development, the REFERTIL project provides a strong legislation support to the European Commission for the new EU27 fertiliser regulation, and standardization of the compost/biochar technologies and safe products. The compost and biochar policy support work elements will be completed by September 2013.

Mayoral Guillermo Rosas is a mechanical engineer working in the Chemical Engineering Group, Environmental and Bioprocess of the University of León (ULE). He was honored for his work on a mobile pyrolysis plant for turning vineyard prunings into biocahr. The mobile pyrolizer needs no external power source anc converst 55 kg/hr into char at temperatures between 550 and 750 degrees C. and was a research and development project between the University of Leon; the Barcelona business Bodegas Torres; and Mecanotaf based in Lugo.

The biochar was applied in an experimental vineyard at Bodegas Miguel Torres.

More information about the award can be found here:
http://www.unileon.es/noticias/guillermo-rosas-mayoral-investigador-de-l...

The Kon-Tiki was developed by Hans-Peter Schmidt in Switzerland with the Ithaka Institute> based on the MOKI Cone Kiln from Japan.

There is a nice description in the video of air currents around the cone kilns. The Ton Tiki and The Tasmanian version developed by Frank Strie called the Kon-Tiki-Tas. Are both large - vinyard scale cone kilns.

Information about smaller kilns and backyard scale variations can be found at: http://backyardbiochar.net/

Smartly designed and carefully operated bioenergy systems can actually help pull carbon out of the air, and put it in the ground where we need it. Companies that are commercializing these technologies today include Cool Planet Energy Systems, Phoenix Energy, and Burt’s Greenhouses. Surprisingly, this is not new: There are biomass boilers that have been producing durable carbon-ash soil amendments for years.

The following three speakers will help explain how all this works and why it is important for bioenergy to run “carbon negative.”

Dr Jeff Novak, Soil Scientist, USDA Agricultural Research Service
Tom Miles, Professional Engineer, TR Miles Technical Consultants
Dr Andrew Carpenter, Soil Scientist, Northern Tilth

Making the Pyramid
Skewers on the Pyramid
Lighting the Pyramid

Kelpie Wilson has put together an outstanding list of Backyard Charmakers at http://backyardbiochar.net/

This is a great opportunity to upgrade your firepit or burn pile to a cleaner burning biochar-maker.

PLEASE BE SURE TO FOLLOW THE FIRE SAFETY RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR YOUR AREA!!

Ok, now go put a skewer on the biochar-making barbecue!

Dimensions & Instructions from Kelpie's site:

(The Pyramid kilns is) much easier to make than the round kiln. Kevin just cut the pieces from flat sheet steel and welded the edges together, adding some square tubing around the top edge for stability....

Dimensions of the pyramid kiln are 46" top edge; 18" bottom edge; and 27" along the angled edge. It was made from a 4'x8' piece of 11 gauge sheet steel. The sheet was cut into two, 2'x8' strips, and the 4 trapezoidal shaped sides were cut out of that. Square tubing was welded along the top edge for stability.

ABC Rural recently covered Euan Beamont, co-director of Energy Farmers Australia, they've been making a prototype kiln to create biochar

the original news article:
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-06-19/the-sweet-smell-of-bio-char-produc...

and the video:

He is using the system primarily to make biochar from manure and from wheat, and has done some test fires with box thorn.

More info about Energy Farmers Australia
http://www.energyfarmers.com.au

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Notes from Paul Anderson

Douglas Clayton has updated his video about making Biochar in the Jolly Roger Oven.

He has a bit of help from Hugh (making jokes about steam activating the char). It's a great video, well worth the watch.

If you are new to the Jolly Roger Oven, Doug has more detail in his first video

more about the the line of thought behind the Jolly Roger biochar method can be found here:
http://www.biochar-international.org/regional/ubi

For those of you in New Hampshire, Doug Clayton and Intuitive Biochar is in Jaffrey, NH 03452

Check out the Article in the Capital Pres profiling Biochar and the work of Rockford Washington farmer David Gady.
http://capitalpress.or.newsmemory.com/publink.php?shareid=0d956f8c0

This article is a quick summary of what biochar is, and what it can do for commercial agriculture.

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Lauren Hale presents a nice big picture view and also detail about how biochar can help plants, with some of the results of work done at UC Riverside in California.

Harvard has an organic community garden. The garden has been growing over the last 5 years, and this year they are trying biochar.

It will be nice to watch their project and see how their garden grows.

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Gasifier stoves in 3 sizes
Rice husk and pellet char

Here you see all three gasifiers along with the biochar that they produce.
It is easy to imagine:

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From Living Web Farms in Mills River, North Carolina
http://www.livingwebfarms.org/

Great introduction to making clean biochar lead by Bob Wells, soil scientist Jon Nilsson and Patryk Battle.

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Last weekend's Biochar Burn School was fantastically successful! Many thanks to all the participants. I was especially pleased at the diversity of people who attended - young folks and elders, permaculturists and scientists, land owners, nomads and Forest Service professionals. Thanks to everyone who came back for an extra day, just to see what else we could learn about this process.

Special thanks to Peter Hirst of New England Biochar for showing up with tools, educational materials and expertise.

For more information: Kelpie Wilson http://www.greenyourhead.com

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Pyro-grilling

Jock Gill has been demonstrating Pyro-grilling. He adapted a standard weber to use an updated version of his iCan stove. He reports that he hasn't had to buy standard charcoal in over a year. In the process he has been making a nice grade of biochar.

It looks pretty tempting. For details and answers to questions about the grill please download Jock's Pyro-Grilling pdf .

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Grass Tablet Biochar
Grass Tablets
Grill modified with an iCan reactor

The grass tablet biochar (pyrolytic carbon) shown above was made in an iCan TLUD
with a variable speed blower. This charcoal was air quenched and is thus bone dry.
When wet, it is very soft and can be formed to fit a variety of shapes. I have found, for
example, that grass tablet biochar saturated with cold water is effective at reducing the
pain of burns.

The following pages illustrate some of the ways the above biochar was made.
Note: Grass biochar will be ashy as grass has considerably more ash content that
wood

Grass tablets broken into short sections prior to being loaded into the fuel chamber of
the iCan reactor.
These tablets were made from field grass about 3 years ago in Shelburne, VT. Note
that the longest fibers are about the length of the diameter of the tablet. Shorter is
better.
These tablets are about 4 cm in diameter.

Download the attached Grass Tablet Biochar How To for detailed Reactor photographs and answers to questions posed to Jock by the stoves community.

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From "Shifting Paradigms on Biochar: Micro/Nano-structures and Soluble Components are Responsible for its Plant-Growth Promoting Ability”, S Joseph, ER Graber, C Chia, P Munroe, S Donne, T Thomas , Nielsen S, C Marjo, H Rutlidge, G X Pan, Xiaorong Fan, P Taylor , A Rawal, J Hook, Carbon Management, Vol 4, No. 3 (2013).

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