The PGFireBox is used where large amounts of timber waste must be reduced in a cost efficient and environmentally friendly manner and where electricity converted from the heat energy released by the waste combustion process can be utilized on-site or sold into the local power grid. The system is a Whole-Log Wood Waste Air Curtain Burner coupled with an ORC (Organic Rankine Cycle) Engine. It completely eliminates the costly, polluting and time consuming pre-processing steps, such as chipping or grinding the timber waste to make it acceptable to traditional co-generation facilities. Long distance hauling is also no longer required.
PGFireBoxs are currently offered with gross power ratings of 1 MWe (PGF1000), 500 KWe (PGF500) and100 KWe (PGF100). Additionally, thermal energy is made available at the rate of 5 MWth, (PGF1000) 2.5 MWth (PGF500) and 1 MWth (PGF100). This thermal energy can be employed for a veriety of applications, such as supporting kiln drying operations at saw mills or drying crushed concrete before screening, further reducing current energy costs.
The PGFireBox Systems are portable and especially the 110KWe system can be readily deployed close to the location where the woody biomass is collected and as time goes by, re-positioned closer to the remaining wood waste source as that becomes practical. An example would be the need for forest rehabilitation where millions of trees killed by beetles or wildfires must be removed and disposed of for forest fire mitigation and to prepare for reforestation.
Another application would be a PGFireBox reducing incoming wood waste dropped off at a landfill or transfer station for which usually quite handsome tipping fees are collected. Rather than grinding the waste wood and depositing it into the landfill to get rid of it (as most of the ground waste has little or no beneficial reuse as land-cover mulch or as fuel for traditional co-generation plants, primarily because of the necessary preprocessing cost), it would be reduced economically and environmentally friendly without pre-processing whatsoever in the PGFireBox. The additional benefit would be that the generated electricity would, of course, be utilized to power the air curtain burner itself, after that to support any other electricity consuming machine in the yard or forest landing and finally, any surplus power would be sold to the local power company into its power grid.
The PGFireBox is foremost a portable system to get rid of woody biomass waste; it is not a traditional biomass power plant for which the biomass is a fuel that usually has to be purchased at a cost. The PGFireBox's return on investment is so formidable, because it rightfully can factor in the revenue from tipping fees, if operated at a landfill or transfer station, or for a timber waste generator, the avoidance cost of not having to pay tipping fees and related grinding and transportation cost for waste disposal.
In the US, the PGFireBox system meets or exceeds all applicable EPA regulations for air curtain burners. The Australian EPA recently tested the Air Burners FireBox in Canberra (ACT) and developed emissions data to be employed for permitting the machines in Australia.
A PGFireBox System consists of two basic units, the Air Curtain FireBox (left) and the Power Unit (right) shownhere and in the PGFireBox Video (See linkbelow) for the 100 KWe model. An additional air cooling module is needed where water-cooling from a well, lake or stream is not an option (shown on far right).