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Miscanthus Pellets

Miscanthus Pellets
Miscanthus is also known as elephant grass or sliver grass as one of the most popular energy plants. Planted in the spring, Miscanthus is a viable and productive crop for over fifteen years. In September, October, the leaves shed, returning nutrients to the soil. The canes are harvested during winter. The plant has a low mineral content that results in higher fuel quality. Annual yield is relatively high: 3 to 6 tons per acre, with low moisture content. The grass does not grows from seed, it grows from purpose planted rhizomes. Once the rhizomes are in place that field is pretty much miscanthus dedicated and no longer suitable for crop rotation practices. So it's expensive to plant the crop.
Turning miscanthus into pellets or briquettes is a good way to become manageable fuel, and easy to transport long distance.When it comes to processing miscanthus it is harvested and baled like many other agricultural crops. The structure of the miscanthus is very hard, really it appears very similar to bamboo. For initial size reduction a bale shredder and hammer mill can easily get the material down to size. In most cases the miscanthus will be dry enough to pelletize, with typical samples been at 12% moisture content. The characteristics of miscanthus are very much like a woody biomass. The fibres are very dense and strong and this needs to be considered before processing in the pellet mill. Due to the high density of these fibres a high compression die needs to be used in the pellet mill to generate sufficient heat and compression. If steam is available this can help to sofen the fibres for easier compression in the pellet mill.

biomass pellets 
Originally many miscanthus pellets are actually used in utilities and power stations, miscanthus was to harvest and sell the whole bales to the power companies. However the prices per ton that the power companies are now offering can barely cover the costs to cut and bale the grass. Through installing a small pellet plant they can now upgrade their material into products that has a much higher value per ton. Miscanthus fuel pellets cannot be used in all pellet stoves and boilers as they do produce a higher ash content than wood pellets and a possible clinker formation.
Miscanthus pellets can offer viable biomass heating, saving CO2, fuel costs and making good use of poor quality land. Burning it as biomass fuel presents a range of challenges, so selecting the right boiler for the job is paramount in order to enjoy the full benefits of this emerging biomass fuel.