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Bioenergy technology: foward-moving innovation

Photograph of a biomass plant

Increasing bioenergy options and efficiency

AREVA is continuing to advance the standardization and efficiency of bioenergy plants by developing new technologies to be implemented in its energy production process.

Combustion step grate

Capable of burning various forms of biomass, combustion step grates are a highly practical bioenergy technology. The step grate is also able to burn mixed biomass fuels, providing flexibility in the range of usable biomass residues (such as sugar cane bagasse), depending on their availability.

The main advantages of the step grate include:

  • fewer emissions
  • higher efficiency
  • less unburned material
  • improved consistency of steam conditions
  • flexible fuel options
  • lower CO2 output

Manufactured in Chennai, India, the grates have a modular design with adjustable air flow, grate speed and stroke of grate elements. These adjustable components give biomass plant operators greater flexibility to achieve the most efficient burn rates. 

Next generation bioenergy

As a pioneer, AREVA aims to develop promising technologies:

  • Biomass preparation
  • New cogeneration technologies
  • Bio-refineries and bio-based products 

Biomass torrefaction

Torrefied wood

Biomass torrefaction is a thermo-chemical process that eliminates water and alters part of the organic matter of biomass to break down its fibers. Torrefied biomass (or bio-coal) offers a number of benefits which make it an excellent substitute to coal as a fossil fuel for use in thermal and electrical power production.

Bio-coals benefits include high energy density, hydrophobia and increased grindability. The shipment, handling and combustion of bio-coal are also facilitated compared to simple biomass.

AREVA acquired the Thermya torrefaction process in 2012, a unique technology, which is currently being deployed commercially.

This acquisition enabled AREVA to consolidate its position as a solutions provider for low-carbon energy. This is in line with the group’s strategy to broaden its offer in the field of renewable energies by placing greater emphasis on technology.

Optimization and plant efficiency

AdCub funding

AREVA was awarded funding by KIC InnoEnergy* to develop an innovative bioenergy solution.

AREVA is developing AdCub, a modular concept for compact power plants targeting small-scale biomass resources that addresses relatively untapped growth opportunities in Europe. The objective is to combine innovative solutions which optimize customer costs for small-scale power plants (between 3 and 6 MW) and reduce construction time. This new biomass plant concept also aims to improve upstream technologies for multi-fuel acceptance and higher availability.

* KIC InnoEnergy is a leading Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC). It is part of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology fostering research and development activities in the field of sustainable energy.