Extrusion Process | Shimada

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Extrusion Process


Wood extrusion (or the production of "Heatlogs") is the joining together of chips of wood and/or sawdust by the use of pressure and heat utilising the natural resins in the wood. Either soft or hard woods can be used as can many other biomass materials such as coffee shells, peanut and sunflower seed husks, coconut husks, etc.

The guiding principle behind the production of extruded "Heatlogs" is that the raw material used is always a clean waste material, i.e. the natural by-product of either the timber industry (chippings, sawdust, off-cuts, slabwood, etc.) or agricultural processing (sunflower and peanut shells, rice husks, etc.)

Basic information always required:

1. Amount of waste biomass available
2. Type and quality of material available
3. Moisture content of the material
4. Cost per tonne delivered to plant

Basic costing parameters:

1. Cost of your raw materials
2. Cost of processing your material into correct size and moisture content
3. Running costs, i.e. labour, electricity, etc
4. Site costs, i.e. rent, rates, etc
5. Packaging costs
6. Packaging is currently in 10kg 12-log packs for "Heatlog" winter fuel and in 5kg packs for BBQ fuel, both strapped and shrinkwrapped

Basic information on a Shimada Extrusion Plant:

Output per press (SPMM-850 KS with 65mm moulds) - approx. ½ tonne per hour - will work continuously on a 24 hour operation output - in practice, say, at 80% efficiency, therefore a single Press is capable of producing 48 tonnes of "Heatlog" per 5-day week.

Therefore a 2-Press operation, working a full 5-day week, has the potential output capacity of around 5,000 tonnes per annum, assuming 2 weeks stoppage and 80% efficiency. In practice around 4,000 tonnes production is achievable working 2 x 8-hour shifts, allowing for material supply problems and other contingencies.

Moisture content of the raw material must be reduced to 4-8%.

Chip size required by the Press is c. 2-6 mm, but can include up to 20% fine particle dust.

Therefore with a wet wood plant (moisture content c. 50%) a 2-Press operation will require some 8,000 tonnes of unprocessed raw material. Drier material, say 25% Moisture Content, will require some 5,000 tonnes.

The Presses require no special foundations since there is little vibration. Each Press is powered by a 45kW motor.

A 2-Press plant requires a covered, concreted area of approx. 30 x 25 metres with an additional 500 sq. metres of covered space for storage. Access for transport vehicles is also necessary.

Equipment required (dependent on the type of biomass material used) will include the following:

A Hammer Mill (c/w filter and cyclone), drying equipment, conveyors and screw feeds, storage bins (wet and dry), bagging equipment, exhaust fans, electrical control panel, cutting system for the extrudates and 3-phase electrical facilities of around 150kW.

The cost of a 2-Press Plant varies dependent upon the facilities and equipment already at hand and drying requirements.