Norwegian senior scientist Øyvind Skreiberg is transforming the chopped-off branches and tops of felled spruce trees into a fine powder that is then pressed into high-energy pellets. The transformation is made using a process called torrefaction, a sort of extreme sauna for timber and vegetation.
Norway possesses major unexploited energy resources of waste wood in the form of the branches and tops – known in their Norwegian acronym as GROT. There is an abundance of waste wood to see when we walk in the forest after the lumberjacks have been there. When the logging machinery moves on, what it usually leaves behind are piles of branches and tops.
Skreiberg is leading a team at Norway’s SINTEF Energy Research where samples of the logging waste regularly arrive to be transformed into fuel.