Biomass charcoal is a fuel produced by the carbonization of biomass material. Biomass charcoal briquettes are winning the fuel energy market of Nigeria for being efficient, consistent, long-lasting, and beneficial to the environment and deforestation. That means it’s time to learn everything about charcoal briquette production and charcoal briquette machine.
Biomass charcoal briquettes: raw material
There are various biomass resources available in Nigeria for the production of biomass charcoal briquettes. Some of them are sawdust, sugar bagasse, corn stalks, groundnut shells, wheat straws, palm kernel shells, coconut shells, rice husks, corn cobs, forest wastes, and other agricultural wastes.
The Chief Executive Officer/Co-Founder of the company, Mr. Lanre Sam-Akinkunmi announced that they’ve started processing their palm kernel shells into biomass briquettes for industrial applications, grilling, cooking, and for local charcoal uses.
Biomass charcoal briquettes: production process
The production process of charcoal briquettes is not complicated. It is mainly composed of the following 3 steps.
Step 1. Carbonization: Put raw materials with suitable size and moisture into the carbonization machine for about 45-60 minutes for carbonization. The fully carbonized material was collected for further processing.
Step 2. Crushing and sieving: The carbonized biomass material was ground into fine particles by a roll crusher and sieved by a 200-micron sieve.
Step 3. Briquetting: Mix charcoal powder with tapioca starch and water in proportion. Feed the mixture into a roller briquette machine. The resulting charcoal briquettes are then dried in the sun.
Note: Tapioca starch is used as a binder because it is readily available and relatively cheap in Nigeria.
Biomass charcoal briquettes: briquetting machine
Briquetting is simply a densification process with the application of pressure to biomass materials to obtain compact, durable, and high-quality charcoal briquettes.
That calls for a charcoal briquette machine to turn the charcoal powder into regular-shaped briquettes, which aid in shipping, storage, or direct sale.
Biomass briquette press is commonly used to make charcoal briquettes. It involves two adjacent counter-rotating rollers with indentations in the shape of the desired briquette. The powder is fed from above, which falls into the indentation and is compressed as the rollers turn. The briquette then exits the machine with a desired shape.
Benefits of charcoal briquette machine
- The production rate of a roller press can be very high, reaching 1.5 tonnes per hour.
- The final shape of the briquettes can be round, square, pillow, or oval.
- You can make charcoal briquettes for only $1,000.
- The equipment is robust and capable of 24-hour operation.
In Nigeria’s charcoal briquettes market, oval-shaped products occupy the largest market.
Advantages of biomass charcoal briquette in Nigeria
1. Biomass briquettes mitigate deforestation
Charcoal is the main source of energy in urban centers in Nigeria, where 80% of the population uses charcoal as their primary source of energy for cooking. The energy needs will pose increasing pressure on the forest resources of rural areas.
Biomass charcoal briquettes are made from agricultural wastes such as coconut shells, peanut shells, rice husks, palm kernel shells, corn cobs, and sorghum stalks.
2. Biomass charcoal briquettes alleviate the energy crisis
Due to the current energy crisis, traditional wood charcoal and coal charcoal are expensive (minimum price Naira 1000 per 25 kg bag). In response to the current energy crisis, especially in the Northern areas, biomass briquettes have become the preferred alternative fuel for almost all energy uses for cooking and heating.
3. Biomass briquettes offer an opportunity for small enterprises
The production and sale of briquettes offer income opportunities for entrepreneurs and participants in the supply chain.
In addition, Sylvia Herzog, director of The Charcoal Project, a non-profit organization focused on sustainable biomass solutions, said that there are no big branded briquettes companies monopolizing the market in Africa, which means competition is fragmented.
Biomass charcoal briquettes market in Nigeria
- Nigeria has huge potential for home cooking fuel and heating fuel.
- Charcoal briquette plants can focus on restaurants and institutions, such as schools, hotels, restaurants, and hospitals, which require a lot of fuel and whose cooking requirements are suitable for briquettes (because they burn longer).
- The charcoal briquette plant can also supply fuel to small industries such as chicken farms, breweries, bakeries, etc.
Biomass charcoal briquettes are increasingly popular in Nigeria due to their affordability, sustainability, and versatility. This makes it profitable for investors to set up biomass charcoal briquette plants to turn waste into energy.
Briquetting equipment determines the shape, size, and density of biomass charcoal briquettes. Therefore, in the tide of utilizing biomass energy, a biomass charcoal briquette machine has become a prudent choice for investors.
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