Visible development underway on UK-based biomass power plant

By Katie Fletcher | December 09, 2015

Visible progress has been made with the construction of the 41 MW Templeborough Biomass Power Plant located in Rotherham in South Yorkshire, England. The company recently launched a website dedicated to the project, including a time lapse camera of developments on site.

At the end of 2014, the final planning permissions required to start construction at Firth Rixson Ickles Works Sheffield Road Templeborough Rotherham were received from the Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council and work started the following March. Since March, remedial work has been completed, and several redundant buildings on site have been demolished. According to Templeborough Biomass Power Plant Ltd., much of the concrete and other building materials from the demolition are being recycled. The company said this reinforces the green credentials of the plant and reduces the number of trucks required to move debris from the site.

“The construction teams have been working hard since March and they have now progressed the project to the point where we are starting to see the buildings take shape right across the site, which is really fantastic,” said Tim Forrest, general manager with Templeborough Biomass Power Plant Ltd. “We have also received great support and advice from Rotherham Investment & Development Office and also the council’s planning team, who have assisted us right through the planning and consenting process.”

Now, upon the completion of remediation and preparation of the site, the foundation is being laid for the new power plant buildings, the largest of which will be the boiler room. The site has begun to rise from the ground as the power plant equipment, boiler, turbine, generator, and gas cleanup and the wood fuel store are built. The company’s time lapse cameras provide a bird’s eye view of the first sections of wall that are emerging over the top of the site boundaries. The image updates every 15 minutes. Templeborough Biomass has also began laying the cable that will carry the generated electricity to the national grid in June, and this work is expected to continue into 2016.

Once everything is in place, the company will undergo an extensive testing and commissioning process before sending its generated renewable energy to the national grid for use across the U.K. The route of the cable being installed for the project is approximately 2.8 miles long, leaving the project's location at the industrial site at Ickles and eventually reaching the Northern Power Grid electricity substation at Winconbank.

The plant’s projected operational date is in August of 2017. Once open, the 41 MW of electricity generated at the facility will be enough to supply 78,000 homes and reduce CO2 emissions by over 150,000 tons each year. The company said to visualize what that looks like imagine 250,000 large hot air balloons and saving emissions equivalent to 1.75 million plane flights to Paris.

The full operation will include a 350,000 metric ton per year wood pellet manufacturing process and an associated biomass combined heat and power plant. Most of the wood waste will be collected locally from municipal waste sites where wood is segregated from other wastes, as well as from construction sites and other industrial and commercial waste collections, after which it will be processed and shredded before used as fuel in the biomass plant. Stobart Biomass Products Ltd. will provide and process the waste wood fuel after the facility begins operations.

Templeborough Biomass Power Plant Ltd. is owned by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, a Danish infrastructure fund that specializes in renewables. The plant is contracted with Interserve Construction Ltd. and Babcock & Wilcox Vølund. Upon startup, Vølund will also manage the plant for 15 years.

Besides time lapse cameras, the project’s dedicated website offers information on renewable energy, how biomass plants work and answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

“We are really pleased to be launching our new dedicated website, which we hope will put people at the heart of our construction,” Forrest said. “It will keep them up to date with our activities and answer their questions as well as enabling them to watch the plant take shape over the coming months. It is an exciting time for us and we want to make sure that our community feels involved with our project as it develops.”

To see how the project is coming along follow the link to time lapse camera 1 or time lapse camera 2. More information about the project’s development can be found on the Templeborough Biomass Power Plant website.