A small, rounded, compresses mass of substance is called pellet.
First, we can categorize pellets into two types, wood and biomass pellets. Making
Pellets is not that an easy task. It might seem a simple and easy process. It’s not that one puts wood and biomass into pellet mill and pellets come out from the other end. There is a series of steps involved in making quality pellets. Whether wood pellets or biomass pellets. The steps involved are:
Proper pellet mill operation,
And maintenance of pellet mill.
At homes, one can establish a small pellet mill and operate it. But, one has to be thorough enough with the process involved in pellet making.
Raw material and variation in its particle size
The quality of Raw material should be consistent. Raw materials like wood grass or biomass have to be reduced to smaller size as they are in the raw form. Consistency in pellets depends upon the quality of consistent quality raw material. So, in the first step of pellet making the size does matter. Being too large or too small size can affect the quality of the pellets. The energy consumption will also go higher.
Moisture content of Raw Material
Below 10% moisture content is ideal for pellet fuel. With this moisture quality the pellets burn very efficiently without producing any smoke in the combustion process. Also, high temperature is required for pellet production. So, the ideal moisture content in raw material will reduce energy consumption and increase the quality of pellets and pellet mill downtime will also decrease.
Composition of Raw Material
Behaviour of raw material is different with a change in its composition, affecting the production quality.
The difference of composition is referred to the change in particle size and moisture content of raw material. Sometimes, binders and lubricants are added to increase high quality pellets.
Feed Rate of pellet mill
Operating mill on a constant rate is necessary for a regular and maintained quality of the product. Perfect raw material can also be of less use if there are adjustments in feed rate of the pellet mill.
Conditioning and Steaming of raw material
Pre-treatment of raw material is called conditioning. It is done before the raw material reaches the pellet mill. The raw material has to go through some specific mixing techniques with use of water and steam. Steam is mainly used in wood pellet production. Conditioning has its own benefits though sometimes there is no benefit at all. And in some situations it is not wise to follow conditioning.
we will be back with some more information on the topic…