The development of the Chardon-dryer was started with the goal of finding an economically viable method to dry ‘wet biomass’. This biomass, with moisture contents of up to 92%, is highly perishable and typically found in agricultural waste streams. This material can currently only be converted into compost. If properly dried, the materials can be stored for long periods of time and are also easier to convert into biobased products.
During the development, it turned out that the new industrial dryer could also be used economically for drying several industrial waste streams, as well as the solid fraction of digestate, the solid waste stream created by a biomass digester.
Development of the Chardon-dryer was commenced in 2018, and has since then seen a gradual upscaling of both the engineering team and prototypes involved. This has led to a containerized (20ft) system currently tested and further refined on site of a paper mill, studying the drying of fresh biomass as wel as the potential of drying high grade reject fibres for re-use. This prototype will be further tested and improved till summer 2021 and can remove between 50 and 70 liters of water per hour*. Eventually, systems with up to 10 times this drying capacity will be developed. The modular design eases the upscaling dramatically.
*The drying capacity depends on the temperature of the available residual heat.