Business Briefs

By Biomass Magazine | February 27, 2020

Pinnacle announces new ship charter for trans-Pacific wood pellets 
Pinnacle Renewable Energy announced the christening and launching ceremony of S1130, a Handy class vessel of almost 40,000 deadweight tonnage.

The ceremony was held at the Shikoku Dockyard in Takamatsu City, Japan. Pinnacle will charter the vessel, named MV New Pinnacle, from NYK Bulk & Projects Carriers, a leading Japanese ocean carrier, on a long-term charter to carry the company’s industrial wood pellets from Canada to Japan.

The charter is an important element in Pinnacle's approach to logistics as the company continues to participate in the trend of British Columbia-based businesses expanding in Asian markets. Pinnacle has signed three contracts with customers in Japan since August.

Prodesa awarded belt dryer order for Pinnacle plant
Pinnacle Renewable Energy has selected Prodesa for the design, manufacturing and commissioning of a low-temperature belt dryer for its new wood pellet plant in High Level, Alberta.

The selected low-temperature belt dryer has an annual capacity of 210,000 metric tons. It allows for a higher product quality due to gentle drying that keeps the physical and chemical product properties unaltered, while minimizing electricity consumption.

Prodesa recently installed equipment at Skeena BioEnergy, J. D. Irving’s pelleting island and Granule 777, all new Canadian wood pellet plants.

White joins Drax as senior vice president
Drax Biomass Inc. has hired Matt White as its new senior vice president to run the company’s U.S. biomass operations from its headquarters in Monroe, Louisiana.

White joins Drax from Rockwater Energy (now Select Energy Services), an oil industry chemicals and logistics provider, where he was director of manufacturing and engineering.

Most of White’s career has been in manufacturing management, helping organizations, grow, adapt to change and increase safety and efficiency by developing high-performing teams. A mechanical engineer by background, White has worked in many sectors, including air products and chemicals.
White holds a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.

US pellet exports reach nearly 778,000 tons in November
The U.S. exported just under 778,000 metric tons (MT) of wood pellets in November, according to data released in January by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.

More than a dozen countries imported U.S. wood pellets in November. The U.K. was the top destination with 565,110 MT, followed by Belgium-Luxembourg with 63,782 MT, and the Netherlands with 61,834 MT. The value of U.S. wood pellet exports reached $112.35 million in November, up from $75.82 million in October and $79.98 million in November 2018.

Total pellet exports for the first 11 months of the year reached 6.35 million MT at a value of $872.85 million, compared to 5.42 million MT at a value of $730.97 million for the same period of 2018.

Emerson introduces new pulse valve
Emerson has introduced its newly redesigned ASCO Series 353 Pulse Valve to help original equipment manufacturers and end users achieve a more effective, efficient and convenient bag cleaning. With a higher peak pressure, wider temperature range, patented quick-mount clamp connection and overall part simplification, the new series provides longer bag and filter life and lower maintenance. The new valve can be used in a wide range of applications, including power plants.

Without optimum peak pressure, dust collector cleaning becomes inefficient and the consumption of compressed air rises. Because it hits peak pressure quickly, the Series 353 creates a more effective cleaning process. The new design also leads to improved airflow through the filter bags or cartridges for optimized dust collector performance, while reducing costly compressed air consumption. The valve is designed with fewer moving parts for increased reliability and simplified maintenance.