CBI’s State-of-the Art Flailing/Microchipping System Chosen for Rentech Expansion

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More than two decades before “biomass” was a household buzzword, CBI had the foresight to begin work on the biomass/biofuel challenge, as indicated by the company name Continental Biomass Industries, Inc. For over twenty-five years, CBI has become a leader in the manufacture of grinders, chippers, and flails integral to the production of biofuel.

A new project is underway for CBI to design and build three flail debarking and chipping systems for Rentech’s Canadian wood pellet facilities scheduled for installation in the spring of 2014. Rentech has positioned itself to become the largest pellet manufacturer in Eastern Canada. Rentech is converting two decommissioned wood fiber board mills in Ontario for pellet production. As part of the conversion of these facilities, the CBI systems will deliver uniform 6mm – 8mm microchips in a single pass that can immediately be dried and milled into feedstock for pellet manufacturing.

Anders Ragnarsson, founder and president of CBI, relates more about CBI’s custom flailing and chipping system designed specifically for Rentech.

“Traditionally, debarking and chipping in front of a pellet operation has been done with drum debarkers and disc chippers,” Ragnarsson explained. “These systems are overall more expensive and have a tougher time debarking frozen wood. It has been proven beyond any doubt over the last several years that making microchips is a more cost-effective way to produce raw material for a pellet production line.”

Ragnarsson continued, “CBI has obtained orders for debarking and chipping systems for two new Rentech pellet mills in Canada. We went back and forth with numerous iterations and came up with a debarking line consisting of a feed conveyer, 2-roll flail debarker, and a 1200 horsepower CBI Magnum Force 8400 Stationary Chipper with 5-pocket microchip rotor. Each system will have production capabilities of up to 120 tons per hour.”

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Ragnarsson said, “CBI worked in close cooperation with engineers and operating personnel at AgriRecycle and Rentech to design the best solution for producing feed-stock from hardwood species for Rentech’s pellet production needs.”

AgriRecycle was contracted by Rentech as consultants to assist in the design, construction, and operation of both pelleting plants as well as evaluate options for new chipping lines. Mike Ferguson of AgriRecycle knew first-hand the benefits of CBI from having one of CBI’s 6400 machines with a microchip rotor that fed his pellet plant, Ozark Hardwood for years.

The final result will be two CBI flail/microchipping systems installed at Rentech’s Wawa, Canada facility, and a singular CBI flail/microchipping line installed in Rentech’s Atikokan, Canada facility. At the Atikokan facility, CBI will also deliver a Grizzly Mill to grind the bark into the proper size for boiler fuel. These CBI systems will eliminate hammer milling of wet product prior to the dryer. The CBI systems produce a properly-sized chip that can be fed directly into the dryer. The resulting product is then hammer milled immediately after drying.

Ragnarsson indicated that CBI’s solution reduces Rentech’s capital and operating expenditures due to the elimination of the Hammer mill prior to the dryer. “There’s a great deal of excitement here on all our behalves about what these systems can and will deliver, and the new standard they will set in producing raw material for a pellet mill.” Ragnarsson said.

For more information, contact Continental Biomass Industries, Inc. at (603) 382-0556, or visit www.cbi-inc.com.