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Directory of Biomass technologies and resources.

In energy production and industry, biomass refers to living and recently living biological material which can be used as fuel or for industrial production. Most commonly biomass refers to plant matter grown for use as biofuel, but also includes plant or animal matter used for production of fibres, chemicals or heat. It excludes organic material which has been transformed by geological processes into substances such as coal or petroleum. It is usually measured by dry weight.



Biomass heating can be very clean. A simple corn stove, for example, has very clean exhaust. Gasifiers are even cleaner. Biomass can be used for producing electricity now. Truly clean coal gasification MIGHT also be a possibility.

  • Zeitgeist > Biomass: Year-in-Review - Large VC investments, new leadership, increased acceptance from the environmental community, national security threats and unstable energy markets sparked the country's enthusiasm for biomass. The industry's capacity to ramp up production and the ability of this renewable resource to provide a considerable quantity of power, not just liquid fuel, has made biomass a significant player in the U.S. energy future. (Renewable Energy Access; Jan. 2, 2006)

Open Source

  • Featured: Biomass >
    Rocket Stoves Rock - I went camping last night and was very impressed with the Grover Rocket Stove my dad brought along. While our traditional camping methods consumed copious amounts of firewood, the Rocket Stove used just a small amount to produce focused heat more reliably and with very little smoke. (PESWiki; August 22, 2009) (Comment)
  • Featured: Biomass / Biofuel Sources >
    Junipers are great for renewable biomass - You can selectively and sustainably harvest some of a Juniper via the ancient practice of 'decoupage' in which the major part of a tree is removed while leaving one major, healthy limb coming from near the base of the tree, which will grow into a new trunk. Juniper biomass is rich in oil and can be 'slow roasted' by pyrolysis into syngas and biochar. (PESWiki; Oct. 12, 2009)
  • Wood Gas Generator: Run Your Truck on Firewood - The wood gassification process, called pyrolysis, is accomplished by cooking the wood under low oxygen conditions in a wood-gas generator and collecting the vapors, which are then directed to the vehicle's (ideally a truck or SUV with room to carry the gas generator) carburetor to be burned instead of gasoline. (Mother Earth News; April 6, 2009) (Thanks Daniel Bowers)


  • "Power Pallet" biomass plant - The "Power Pallet" is a portable power plant that is essentially a combined biomass refinery and generator that fits on a single pallet and can kick out up to 20 W of electricity. (FreeEnergyBlog; May 29, 2014)
  • Gasoline from Vinegar - Houston-based Terrabon uses a naturally occurring mixture of organisms to convert biomass, not into fuels, but into carboxylic acids. These can be converted into fuel and other chemicals using well-known chemical processes. They recently announced a partnership with Waste Management, also based in Houston. (MIT Technology Review; September 09, 2009)
  • 3rd World >
    Pritchard Powerdrive S5000 - This biomass-fueled, low tech steam engine has a chance of being manufactured for a realistic cost and operates at reasonable pressures to help it last longer. The S5000 was designed to be a small-scale, multi-utility, enterprise energy system, capable of delivering mechanical power and electricity, hot water, space heating; and steam; all from the lowest grade fuels.
  • Stirling Denmark - Provider of CO2 neutral Combined Heat and Power plant based on a biomass fired Stirling Engine. The advantage for combustion of biomass is that the combustion is not inside the cylinders like in an internal combustion engine. The hot heat exchangers have been designed directly for biomass combustion based on experiences from biomass steam boilers.
  • Anvil and Company - Corn specifically processed for heating purposes delivered to your door.

Biomass Electricity

Biomass Hydrogen

  • Featured: Storage > Hydrogen >H Storage / Solar > Concentrated > Thermal > SHEC >
    NEST Lines up Grid-Parity Solar - The first success story of the New Energy Systems Trust (NEST) seems to have already commenced with us lining up a breakthrough grid-parity solar company with an order for 4500 one-megawatt systems in India. SHEC Labs is a likely vendor of the biomass-to-H technology, if not using their solar thermal storage breakthrough. (PESN; May 9, 2012)

Biomass Stoves

  • Featured: Biomass >
    Rocket Stoves Rock - I went camping last night and was very impressed with the Grover Rocket Stove my dad brought along. While our traditional camping methods consumed copious amounts of firewood, the Rocket Stove used just a small amount to produce focused heat more reliably and with very little smoke. (PESWiki; August 22, 2009) (Comment)
  • Biomass > Stoves >
    Travel Stove Creates Electricity While It Cooks (Video) - The BioLite is a portable and fuel efficient cookstove that uses half as much fuel as a camp fire and heats food and water faster than a petroleum fueled camp stove. But what makes it really stand out is that it is capable of generating electricity, part of which is used to run a fan to fuel the fire. (TreeHugger; Apr. 9, 2010)
  • The Dell-Point Europa - Greenfire technology pellet stove is smoke free and reliable, saving up to 60% on home heating costs. It burns bioenergy materials like wood pellets, shelled corn and hulled wheat with 86% efficiency, and received the lowest emissions rating by the EPA.
  • Corn Stoves: an Interim Technology on a Crumbling Foundation? - Though cleaner burning that wood, and currently using a lower-cost fuel, the corn stove should not be regarded as a permanent solution to dependence on foreign oil. Do short term savings on the heating bill entail increasing famine risk in the long term? (PESN; Jan. 6, 2006)
  • Turbo-cooker Wins Prize for Clean Burning - El Salvador inventor Ren Nunez has developed the Turbo-cooker that reduces the amount of fuel needed by over 95% and could make life better for 3 billion people who rely on primitive wood- or biomass-burning stoves for cooking and heating. He now has a prize and a patent. (TreeHugger; Dec. 2, 2007)

Pellet Makers

  • - Start saving on your energy bills today by recycling your waste into pellets that can be burned for fuel. Learn from us as we show you what equipment is right for you based on the material you’d like to convert into pellets. Everything from wood byproducts,sawdust,plastic,foam,wheat,barley,cotton,fibre waste,and other biomass material can be turned into pellets suitable for burning.


  • "Power Pallet" biomass plant - "It could be the most important portable power plant you've never heard of. It's called the "Power Pallet" and it is essentially a combined biomass refinery and generator that fits on a single pallet and can kick out up to 20 kilowatts of electricity." (Free Energy Blog; May 25, 2014)
  • Featured: Waste to Energy > Biomass > CO2 Sequestration >
    Power from CO2 and Fly Ash - By eliminating CO2 emissions, producing fuel, and reclaiming valuable metals from fly ash and flue emissions, MP BioMass offers technological solutions for coal power plants and other CO2 emitters to not only keep them from being shut down but increasing their profit margin. (PESN and BeforeItsNews; January 11, 2012)
  • Whisky Power! Distillery Unveils Scotch Green Power - We pretty sure that the expression “drunk on power” was never meant to be taken this literally. The Combination of Rothes Distillers Limited (CoRD) announced that they have partnered with Helius Energy to install a power plant fueled by none other than whisky by-products! (Inhabitat; Jan. 28, 2009)
  • Nexterra - Claims their Biomass Gasification syngas can displace at least 60 percent of fossil fuel use in lime kilns; an even greater share of fossil fuels — 95 percent and, in some cases, up to 100 percent — could be displaced in pulp mills and many types of boilers, depending on the biomass feedstocks and system configurations. (VentureBeat; Aug. 30, 2008)
  • Biomass-based "Coal" Makes Coal Plants Renewable and Clean - NewEarth Renewable Energy, Inc. produces a "coal" equivalent from biomass sources. The pellets do not smoke, and produce virtually no pollution, yet have the same BTU content as coal, but at a lower price, ultimately. (PESWiki; Feb. 4, 2008)
  • Alternative Fuels / Oil / Plastic >
    Bacteria Make Oil from Biomass - A Georgia company has announced that they have devised a simple, natural way to convert anything that grows out of the Earth into oil. The inventor's formula is simple. Basically, biomass (such as grass clippings or wood chips) plus the right bacteria equals hydrocarbons, which make not just fuel but plastics and other petroleum products. (PESWiki; May 10, 2008)
  • Ensyn - Rapid Thermal Processing transforms wood and other biomass into a low sulfur liquid bio-fuel for industrial heating, or can be blended with diesel for transportation and power applications. The RTP™ process produces high yields, typically 75% by weight, in less than a few seconds with a simple, compact design and low capital cost.
  • Mascoma - Cellulosic biomass has a cost per BTU equivalent to oil of about $14/barrel. Recent advancements in enzymes, organisms and production technologies allow cost-effective ethanol production from inexpensive cellulosic biomass (grass, wood, agricultural and forestry wastes).
  • Biomass gasification technology obtains record hydrogen yield - ZSW has developed a CO2 absorption-enhanced water vapour gasification technology for the production of an energy rich gas from biomass and also for the production of biohydrogen, biomethane and synthetic liquid biofuels. Tests showed yields of up to 70% hydrogen, an unprecedented level. (Biopact; January 12, 2007)
  • Choren Industries - The Carbo-V® Process lies at the heart of CHOREN technology. Using this multi-stage gasification process, it is possible to convert solid biomass and other feed materials containing carbon into combustion or synthesis gas.
  • Green diesel: New process makes liquid transportation fuel from plants - Article - Researchers have discovered a new way to make a diesel-like liquid fuel from carbohydrates commonly found in plants. The new process has the potential to creates twice the energy as is created in using corn to make ethanol. (University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Engineering)
  • Xethanol uses locally available biomass rather than corn as the primary raw material for ethanol production. Biomass is organic waste material and includes everything from wood chips and yard waste, to corn stover and municipal solid waste.
  • Eprida process can operate at small scale, converting waste biomass into fuel and fertilizer. The diesel produced will ultimately be more valuable than ethanol or methanol, and the Eprida process can convert woody plant materials that cannot be cost effectively fermented.
  • Syngas Energy Corp. has acquired the rights to utilize the PyStR Technology, to directly produce high purity hydrogen from biomass (wood chips and/or any carbonaceous fuel).
  • Kwikpower - Engas engineered alternative fuel can be made from biomass production from cellulosic waste or biomass crops. ENGAS requires no engine modifications, or specialised infrastructure or fuel dispensing reconstruction costs.
  • Virent Energy Systems will enable economical use of biomass to produce carbon-neutral hydrogen, fuel gas, liquid fuels or value-added chemicals. Aqueous Phase Reforming can deliver twice the efficiency of the ethanol process, which requires significant heat from fossil fuels for the dewatering step.
  • Bical is the leader in the successful production and continued development of Miscanthus, the multipurpose crop for energy and industry. Miscanthus is a perennial grass, which satisfies the criteria for the ideal energy crop it is both profitable and environmentally friendly.
  • AgriPower - Energy conversion technology fueled with biomass to produce electricity and heat energy. The system operates with an "open" Brayton cycle using a fluid bed combustor and several heat exchangers to heat compressed air that in turn drives a turbine generator set. Readily-Available Fuels: Wood, Coconut Husks, Brewery Waste, Palm Oil, Coffee Shells, Bagasse.
  • Powering Villages from Rice Husks - Charles "Chip" Ransler and Manoj Sinha, two students from the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business, recently started Husk Power Systems, a business that supplies electricity to rural villages in India by gasifying the rice husks that are a waste product of rice milling. (Renewable Energy World; May 19, 2008)
  • Agrivida - Developing improved corn varieties that produces its own enzymes, the corn grain can be broken down into ethanol more efficiently and with less expense. This corn can increase yields of ethanol per acre of farmland by up to 50% and cut production costs for ethanol producers by over 20%. Agrivida's corn seed and process technologies allow the entire corn plant to be converted into ethanol, including the unused stover (the stalk and leaves).
  • TRI - Biomass-to-energy gasification technology company focused on the pulp and paper industry to cost effectively produce biofuels that do not compete with the human food chain. The pulp and paper industry is the world’s largest existing collection system for biomass.
  • Celunol - Biotechnology for producing ethanol (ethyl alcohol) from low-cost and abundant cellulosic biomass materials. Celunol’s technology is designed to achieve high ethanol yields from the carbohydrates that make up the majority of such materials, and it expects its feedstock and energy costs to be much lower than those of either conventional processes that use sugar and starch crops as feedstocks.
  • Lignol Biofuel - Biorefinery technology converts most biomass residues, such as sawmill residues and agricultural residues including straw and bagasse, into a series of valuable organic chemicals and liquid fuels. The estimated cost of ethanol production is U.S. $1.00 per gallon, compared to a corn/ethanol industry standard cost of US $1.15 per gallon.
  • Hydrogen from Biomass - Virent Energy Systems of Wisconsin has developed a novel aqueous phase reforming process for squeezing hydrogen out of biomass, which could mean a cheaper and easier way to make hydrogen for fuel cells. (MIT Technology Review; May 12, 2006)
  • Segway creator unveils his next act - Inventor Dean Kamen wants to put entrepreneurs to work bringing water and electricity to the world's poor. 1 kW generator uses anything that burns, including cow dung. Water purifier makes 1,000 liters of water per day. (CNN; Feb. 16, 2006) (See Slashdot discussion)

WoodMaster PLUS Fuel Furnace - Alternative fuel furnace efficiently burns corn, wood and paper pellets, barley, beet pulp, sunflowers, dried cherry pits, soy beans and a variety of other alternative fuels. Installs outdoors, connects to home furnace system. Saves up to 75%. (BusinessWire; Oct. 17, 2005)

  • Xethanol Converts Xylose to Ethanol and Sweetener - Patented process converts xylose into fuel ethanol and commodity sweetener xylitol from biomass. (Renewable Energy Access; Aug. 24, 2005) [Xethanol is a biotechnology-driven ethanol production company]
  • Ontario Plant Converts Forest Biomass to Bio-oil - Transportable bio-refinery plant will convert unused forest waste into a bio-oil that can be used as fuel to provide heat and electricity, and to make byproducts such as plastics and glues. (Renewable Energy Access; Aug. 23, 2005)
  • Barlow Projects, Inc. - Waste-to-Energy systems converting trash or biomass into steam and/or electricity through the WTE process.

Biomax 15 - several residential prototypes being field tested. 30 lb. of wood can power a typical home for a day. (San Mateo County Times; April 8, 2004) See Google > Biomax 15

  • BioMaxx Systems Inc - Converting cellulosic biomass that is currently being abandoned or land filled into ethanol and other valuable co-products. Holds the worldwide license to a new fermentation process.
  • Nathaniel Energy's Thermal Combustor - Vista International Technologies, Inc. turns processed fuel converted from feedstock such as waste, biomass, tires and virtually any solid carbon based material into useful energy without harming the environment. Funded company is fulfilling orders for installations internationally.
  • Biomass Plant to Convert Rice Straw to Ethanol - Colusa Biomass Energy, a biomass-to-ethanol company, has engaged technical assistance consultants for a production plant in the Sacramento Valley that will convert rice straw to chemical products and ethanol. (Renewable Energy Access; Aug. 5, 2005)

P-Fuel -- Physicist patents garbage-to-gas substitute - Process extracts fuel from oat hulls, corn cobs, scrap paper, and any other kind of biomass you'd care to name, at estimated price of $1.80/gallon. (Palm Beach Post; May 13, 2004)

Barbados Sugar Cane Bound for Biomass - Tekron and Vydexa Industrials objective is to develop an industrial base for production of fuel alcohol and other higher value products from sugar cane biomass. (Solar Access; Aug. 26, 2004)

  • TMG - deals with alternate-fuel topics such as coal-based synthetic fuels (including hydrogen), soy-based biodiesel and biomass-to-ethanol technology and assists its clients in making conventional energy vs. alternate energy decisions.
  • Katrina Wood Waste Creates Biomass Opportunity - Green Energy Resources is offering to pay the government to release the wood normally sent to a landfill or burned. GER says the harvested destruction from weather events in general could power as much as 10% of U.S. energy needs. (PESN; Sept. 15, 2005)
  • IAS Solar Turbine also has Biomass Applications - International Automated Systems to install first phase of solar power plant near Barstow, California. Claims their solar-heat-turbine system will be competitive with fossil-based power. Biomass applications of turbine also progressing. (PESN; Oct. 5, 2005)
  • 2005 Year in Review, U.S. Biomass Energy Policy - 2005 was marked by considerable growth in the field of biomass and biofuels in the U.S., thanks in part to the Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI), numerous agriculture organizations and several Members of Congress. (Renewable Energy Access; Jan. 4, 2006)
    • Growth in Biomass Could Put U.S. on Road to Energy Independence - One billion dry tons of corncobs, cornstalks, switchgrass and other types of biomass – any organic matter that is available on a renewable or recurring basis – would displace 30 percent of the nation’s petroleum consumption for transportation. (Newswise, Tennessee - April 21, 2005)
    • In Renewable Energy Portfolios, Biomass is #1, US Govt Confirms - Green Energy Resources (nasdaq citing the US Energy Information Agency, (EIA) confirms biomass is the number one renewable energy in the world. Wood biomass comprises 48% of all current renewable... (EnvironmentalNewsNetwork; March 28, 2005)
  • Biomass use isn't new, but it is the future - Proponents say it is sustainable and CO2 reducing. (ic; July 21, 2004) [Not mentioned in the story: techniques exist that convert biomass to energy with no CO2 emissions at all.]
  • Scientists set sights on biomass to reduce fossil fuel dependence - Using plants rather than oil or coal to produce fuels and chemicals could play an essential role in reducing the world's dependence on fossil fuels, according to a group of scientists from the UK and the USA writing today in the journal Science. (PhysOrg; Jan. 27, 2006)


  • American Energy Security- Website developed to inform individuals, businesses, and policy makers about America's liquid fuels crisis and the tremendous challenges and opportunities ahead.
  • BiomassMuse- Largest blog about bioenergy in german-speaking countries. It also has an english translation. The topics are the recent developments in the biogas, biofuels and woody biomass sector.

Research & Development

See Directory:Biomass Research and Development - separate page


  • Tools >
    Basscam Biomass Camera - BassCam has developed an economical, durable, easy to use camera package for viewing combustion chambers in operating biomass applications, up to 4000°F/2204°C, so you can detect early signs of trouble before they become a problem in your furnace.


In the News

  • "Power Pallet" biomass plant - The "Power Pallet" is a portable power plant that is essentially a combined biomass refinery and generator that fits on a single pallet and can kick out up to 20 W of electricity. (FreeEnergyBlog; May 29, 2014)
  • World Sustainable Energy: biomass pellets - Biomass fuel pellets are a clean, CO2-neutral and convenient fuel made from wood chips, forestry residues or woody energy crops. Biomass has become directly competitive with fossil fuels in Europe, where highly efficient combined heat-and-power (CHP) biomass plants have replaced an increasing amount of coal and oil. (Biopact; Mar. 1, 2007)
  • First US Cellulosic Ethanol Plant - Celunol achieves high ethanol yields from cellulosic biomass at costs competitive with conventional sugar and starch feedstocks. Its 50,000 gallon pilot facility commenced operation in November 2006 and a 1.4 million gallon facility is targeted for completion in mid 2007. (The Energy Blog; Feb. 8, 2007)



See also

ALT FUELS (alphabetical sequence)


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