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Members of DTA

The Dutch Torrefaction Association has three members: ECN, FoxCoal BV and Torr®Coal Technology BV. All five are introduced below.


The Energy research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) is the leading institute for energy research in the Netherlands with a staff of 600 and a turnover of 100 M€. ECN develops high-level knowledge and technology for a sustainable energy system and transfers them to the market. Torrefaction takes a prominent place in the R&D portfolio of ECN. Since 2003, ECN has played a pioneering role in the development of torrefaction technology. Extensive lab-to-pilot scale research culminated in the patented BO2 technology, which is characterised by a robust compact reactor design, a high energy efficiency, low costs, no waste streams and a well-manageable high product quality. ECN is now heading for demonstration, immediately followed by global market introduction, together with Nuon/Vattenfall and other industrial partners. Simultaneously, further R&D is dedicated to optimising product quality in view of logistics and end-use requirements and to broadening the biomass feedstock range.

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Jaap Kiel, ECN Biomass, Coal & Environmental research

‘Following a PhD study on flue gas cleaning, I joined ECN in 1990. Since then, I was involved in a series of governmental and industrial projects on various aspects of biomass, coal and waste combustion and gasification, currently in the position of programme manager Biomass & Coal. ECN focuses increasingly on industrial R&D services and development of innovative renewable energy technologies. Torrefaction is a perfect example. Following earlier attempts in the metallurgical industry in France, ECN rediscovered the idea and made it fit for large-scale energy purposes. Torrefaction-based bioenergy carriers have the potential to become the commodity solid biofuel, applied not only for co-firing in coal-fired power plants, but also, e.g., for gasification-based transport fuels production and distributed combined heat and power generation.’

Torrefactie - Topell Energy

Topell Energy

Topell Energy is a Dutch producer of bio coal; a sustainable and high caloric fuel. Using an innovative process, bio coal is produced from a raw material of wood-like residue from forestry and landscape management. Bio coal can be used as fuel for power and heat production, as a fuel for the steel industry and as raw material for the refining of transport fuel. It can successfully compete in many ways with fossil fuels, such as coal. The first Topell factory, with a production capacity of 60,000 tonnes per year, was launched in the Netherlands in 2010.

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Erwin Eymans, Topell Energy bv

‘Topell Energy BV is a Dutch company which has developed an innovative and economic torrefaction process for the production of high quality fuels from wood-like residue. It constitutes a major step towards affordable, sustainable fuels in the short term. Torrefaction is a process of heating biomass until first water followed by low energy substances are expelled. This process of transforming the biomass into a high value energy carrier strongly improves the fuel’s qualities, together with its energy density. The resulting fuel can be used directly for generating electricity and for refining into transport fuels. The use of biomass has a substantial impact on the CO2 emissions when electricity is generated. Using fuel produced by Topell Energy, can reduce CO2 emissions by up to 94%.’

Torrefactie - Torr Coal

Torr Coal

Torr®Coal Technology BV makes bio coal (Torr®Coal) from biomass; a by-product available in considerable volumes, but in its raw state unsuitable as a fuel. Innovative technology transforms biomass into a fuel made for generating power and / or industrial applications. Various types of biomass, pure or impure, can be utilised as raw materials for the production of Torr®Coal. Examples include residue from forestry activities, environmental management, agriculture, industry and SRF. As well as producing bio coal to the client’s specifications, Torr®Coal Technology BV also specialises in the purchase of raw materials, the sale of end products and in commercial project development.

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Jan Brouwers, Torr-Coal Technology BV

‘Apart from being a member of the Torr®Coal Group team, I have about 30 years experience in the world of sustainable energy and waste. Over this time I’ve been involved in photovoltaic sun energy, wind energy, LPG systems, waste recycling, secondary fuels, biomass and, now; torrefaction. You could say I’ve acquired a certain depth of knowledge and expertise across these fields. I am convinced that shortages in fossil fuels and raw materials will eventually be upon us and that we will be required to reduce our dependency on such fuels to a minimum and that raw materials will need to be used as efficiently as possible. This is our only option for ensuring that the following generations do not suffer shortages in these areas. In my view, torrefaction can deliver an important contribution towards this.’


Are you a bio coal producer? You will find full information on the DTA organisation and its objectives here. More information

Power producers

An overview of all the advantages the use of torrefied material can offer you as an power producer. More information

Torrefaction and DTA in the media

You can discover what the media have to say about DTA and torrefaction; click here to review all the published reports. More information