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Building a fire with wood sticks and logs is one of the most wholesome experiences. But it would take a lot of trees to heat up our homes. Instead, the fire-stoking power of plant material can be concentrated in a wood pellet, boosting its burning efficiency. However, wood pellet making equipment and machinery involves more than just the compaction of sawdust. Processing high-quality pellets from biomass can be as intricate as loading a fire-lay.

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Remove contaminants from primary materials to manufacture wood pellets

Residues from the timber industries are excellent raw materials for wood pellets. Plant material that cannot be worked into finished products, wood chips, sawdust and waste dust from sawmills find an alternative stream as pellets.

If your primary resource is pre-used wood, it must be stripped of paints, varnishes, and carpentry articles such as nails before processing. These chemicals and materials not only compromise the pellet’s quality but may become a hazard at the consumer end.

Grind the wood mixture in a hammer mill to produce a homogeneous pellet

Mill the material into uniform particle sizes, even if the by-products come from the same resource. Dissimilar particles weaken the structure of the wood pellets and could cause fracturing. Moreover, a heterogeneous mixture of grains promotes stickiness in the equipment, creating bottlenecks down the production line.

After grinding the input wood product, pass it through a hammer mill to ensure consistency in the final feed material.

Lower the moisture content in wood pellets with dehumidifying technology

Another critical step in wood pellet production is water reduction. Even if the material is stored in dry conditions, wood typically absorbs moisture from the atmosphere.

Select your drying equipment according to the manufacturing method. A heating cabinet integrates well into batch wood pellet manufacturing, while a belt dryer is better suited for a continuous process operation.

Ensure the correct wetness and dispersal of wood particles with a conditioner

Moisture removal is essential because particles cannot be compacted if soaked. But a wholly dehumidified pellet cannot hold together.

High-quality wood pellets have around 7% water content. Treat the wood mixture with conditioning equipment to ensure it is at the proper moisture level. Besides adding water, a conditioner disperses the particles into a homogeneous blend. These properties are crucial whether the end product is designed as industrial pellet fuel or for domestic use.

Wood pelleting making machinery must be compliant with sizing requirements

The wood pelleting machine compacts the conditioned wood material into strands. The internal heat of the technology fuses the particles, forming a solid. A series of knives cut the filament down to size at the other end. It is also worth mentioning that when starting a wood pellet plant, a choice between two types of machines needs to be made. That is between a flat die or ring die pelleting machine.

However, regulations around the sizing of wood pellets are generally stricter than for other applications, say pelleted feed or extruded plastic. The dimensions of wood pellets must be between 3.15 and 40.0 mm.

Processing steps involved in wood-pellets making

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