For most people, the pellet made from corn is a kind of commendable feed for various animals. However, corn pellet is also an alternative biomass fuel with an increased availability of fuel resources, generally used to create a source of heat for residential and sometimes industrial spaces.
Corn pellets come from a renewable source as with wood pellets, which, together with their cleaning burning, makes them eco-friendly. At the same time, burning corn pellets creates a wonderful sweet scent. They can offer the same cost-effective heating as wood pellets.
Corn Pellet Fuel Application
1. For home heating: corn pellet fuel is commonly used for domestic heating for its high burning rate.
2. For biomass industry boiler: as a kind of main fuel for industry boiler, corn pellet fuel can replace coal, gas, oil, etc. with less environment polluting.
3. For power station: in thermal power plant, burning 1,000 tons of corn pellets can reach a working efficiency that 8,000 tons of coal has.
4. For other industries: corn pellet fuel can be utilized to provide heat power for textile, printing, chemical, medicine, food, etc. industries.
Why Take Corn as the Raw Materials for Making Bio-fuel
1. As an ideal natural pellet fuel, corn can grow fast in wide regions that suits for its plantation, which means a consistent availability of fuel resources.
2. Maize has a high calorific value of 16.3 MJ/KG.
3. There is no smell and irritation fume, low pollutants and emissions when maize burns, so it has no negative effects on the environment.
4. The ash produced after burning can be used as additive for the gardens to improve the soil quality.
5. Corn is easy to store. It can be stored in any dry and clean place with rodents and pests avoided.
6. The low-grade and damaged corn also can be used to produce pellet fuel, which improves the use ratio of corn, reducing a waste.
Make Use of Corn Pellets or Wood Pellets?
To produce heat, there are many kind of traditional methods, such as electricity, gas, and oil, etc. but they need large amount of investment. With developing new-type energy that is eco-friendly and renewable, there are two kinds of alternative sources of fuel emerging, wood pellets and corn pellets. Both wood pellets and corn pellets can be used as fuel, and the following factors can be take into consideration to decide what pellets to employ, the corn pellet or the wood pellet?
Corn pellets are made of shelled-compressed corn seed; wood pellets are made of compressed woody materials.
The availability of corn pellets and wood pellets depends on the location where has abundant raw materials for both of them.
Wood pellets are made of sawdust, wood chips, bark, agricultural crop waste, and other organic materials, so wood pellets are readily available in areas with rich wood resources, such as the northeast and northwest areas of U.S.
Corn pellets are obviously readily available in areas where corn is grown. In Midwest of America, the corn pellet is easy and cheap to obtain. But in areas where corn has no much plantation or has to be bought in, the cost may be a little higher.
Wood pellets are burned in pellet stoves, but corn pellets should be burned in corn stoves or multi-fuel stoves. The corn stove is specially-designed for corn pellets, and the multi-fuel stove can work for burning both corn pellets and wood pellets.
Dampness will affect the performance of wood pellets, so they must be transported and stored in dry condition. Exposing bagged wood pellets outdoor or in an indoor damp environment must be avoided.
Storing corn pellets is problematic, and large areas like spare garage, or silo are preferred. Corn pellet also need the avoidance of dampness, at the same time, they have to be stored in an airtight plastic or metal container to prevent rats, insects and other rodents for the corn property of being food.
Burn Corn Pellets by Corn Stove or Multi-fuel Pellet Stove
Corn stove is a type of pellet stove that is specially designed to burn corn pellets, and it is similar to a wood pellet stove. But the chief difference between a wood pellet stove and a corn stove is the corn pellet stove has an addition of the active ash removal system and the metal stirring rod within the firepot. And the metal stirring rod is to churn the firepot as it rotates; the ash removal system consists of augers at the bottom of the firepot that discharge the ash and clinkers. During the burning of corn pellets, the sugar content within maize will cause the ashes to stick together, forming a hard mass, which means the corn stove has to be cleaned more often, and the metal stirring rod can break apart these masses, causing a much more consistent burn. Some special stoves are designed to automatically clear the clinkers, while others must be cleared regularly by hands. Corn pellet stove do not require a traditional chimney system, instead require an exhaust vent. Some vents can be set on the side of the building.
In the mean time, there is also another option of multi-fuel pellet stoves which can work for various fuels, including wood, corn, cherry pits, etc., to burn the maize pellets.
Growing Popularity of Burning Corn Pellets
America is the leading country planting and producing corn, and there are long term experiences with burning corn in the US, where they worked intensively already in the 1970s to develop the technology for burning maize.
Nowadays, to improve the utilization rate of fuel and reduce polluting environment, processing the biomass materials into pellet is a popular way to meet the requirement, and corn pellet is common in the US, so America can be a large potential market for corn pellet production and application.
In 2005, there were an estimated 65,000 corn pellet stoves in the US. A year later, it was more than double to 150,000 and by 2007, it was expected to reach 350, 000. This is because corn is among the cheapest fuel resources. Wood pellets are in short supply and their prices have more than doubled. However, the rapid rise in demand for corn stoves means they are hard to come by.
Besides America, China, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, India, France, Indonesia, Italy and Canada, etc. are the other countries having large capacity of maize production, which have the possibility to manufacture corn pellets, or be the suppliers of corn as the raw materials for making corn pellets.
In 2005, there are an estimated 65,000 corn pellet stoves in the US. A yea later, it was more than double to 150,000 and by 2007, it was expected to reach 350,000. This is because corn is among the cheapest fuel resource . Wood pellets are in short supply and their prices have more than doubled. However, the rapid rise in demand for corn stoves means they are hard to come by.