SPECIFICATIONS & QUALITY STANDARDS

Specifications and quality standards of the pellets biomass

leaf The quality certification of biomass pellets is necessary both for environmental and practical reasons, as a certified product has much greater potential outlets on the market. In the great majority of European countries, there are few or no laws that determine the quality of wood pellets. It is often the case, not the regulations quality pellets to be covered by the general legislation governing biomass.
Currently only a few European countries such as Austria, Sweden, Italy and Germany have official standards exclusively for compressed biomass (such as pellets). For this reason, some of those standards (particularly ÖNORM M1735 and DIN plus) enjoy widespread acceptance throughout Europe yet, that is, beyond their countries of origin. Of the countries with national quality standards pellets, the ÖNORM M1735 Austria is among the most rigorous and includes controls at both the product and the production system.
Other countries (eg Denmark and Finland) have decided to wait and adopt the domestic legislation of a common European standard quality wood pellets, when institutionalized. Since the beginning of 2010 has been the standard EN 14961-1, which generally refers to biomass (and pellets) for industrial uses. The more specialized a model exclusively for wood pellets called En 14961-2 and when put into effect the various national quality standards will have to harmonize with it or adopt it within a period of six months. The quality standard EN 14961-2 refers to wood pellets for non-industrial purposes and is in the final stage of a draft. Respectively, is in preparation standard EN 14961-6 relating pellets from biomass other than wood. Similarly EN 14961-6 will address non-industrial uses. Table 1 below presents the most common quality standards already in force in Europe, and the final draft EN-14961-2.
Regardless of the quality system that will eventually prevail, the need for certification specifications pellets is real to ensure maximum absorption of the product of the growing market for pellets.

Table 1: National quality standards for biomass pellets, Austria, Sweden, Germany and Italy and the final draft for a common European standard household wood pellets.

Specifications

Units of measurement

Austria

Sweden

Germany

Italy

Europe

ÖNORM M1735

SS187120

DIN 51731

DIN plus

CTI

EN 14961-1

 

Diameter

mm

4-10

To be mentioned

4-10

4-10

6

6-8

Length

mm

≤ 5*Δ

≤ 4*Δ

≤ 50

≤ 5*Δ

Δ-4*Δ

3,15-40

Density

Kg/m3

-

≥ 600

-

-

620-720

≥ 600

Smithereens

% κ.β.

≤ 1

-

-

-

≤ 1

≤ 1

Moisture Content

% κ.β.

≤ 10

≤ 10

≤ 12

≤ 10

≤ 10

≤ 10

Ash Content

% κ.β.

≤ 0,5

≤ 0,7

≤ 1,5

≤ 0,5

≤ 0,7

≤ 0,7

Calorific Power

MJ/kg

≥ 18

≥ 16,9

17,5-19,5

≥ 18

≥ 16,9

16,5-19

Sulfur

% κ.β.

≤ 0,04

≤ 0,08

≤ 0,08

≤ 0,04

≤ 0,05

≤ 0,03

Nitrogen

% κ.β.

≤ 0,3

-

≤ 0,3

≤ 0,3

≤ 0,3

≤ 0,3

Chlorine

% κ.β.

≤ 0,02

≤ 0,03

≤ 0,03

≤ 0,02

≤ 0,03

≤ 0,02

Arsenic

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 0,8

-

-

≤ 1

Cadmium

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 0,5

-

-

≤ 0,5

Chromium

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 8

-

-

≤ 10

Copper

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 5

-

-

≤ 10

Mercury

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 0,05

-

-

≤ 0,1

Lead

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 10

-

-

≤ 10

Zinc

mg/kg

-

-

≤ 100

-

-

≤ 100

Nickel

mg/kg

-

-

-

-

-

≤ 10

Additional

%

≤ 2

To be mentioned

-

≤ 2

To be mentioned

≤ 2