FAQ’s on the AMG 40ft HQ Containerised Portable Off Grid Pyrolysis BioChar Technology

Large machine for producing BioChar in Container

Q. Does the unit require power from an external source to operate.
A. No the unit is totally off grid and generates its own power to operate.

Q. Is the unit required to be located in a building or a designated location.
A. The pyrolysis unit is fully containerised which allows the unit to be located at the source of the biomass green waste rather than transporting green waste to the unit.

Q. Is it EPA approved for emissions.
A. The EPA has conducted tests with results being below standard critical limits. The unit meets the EPA’s requirements for safe and efficient operation.

Q. Does it have any particular safety certification
A. EPA guidelines say no need for safety certification.

Q. Does it produce CO2 when processing biomass green waste
A. All biochar units in any form produce CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) and some units in large quantities resulting in the need for flaring. The AMG unit does not flare. Some CO2 in this unique process will be produced whilst the unit is getting to normal operating temperature. CO2 and CO (Carbon Monoxide) can be monitored during operation, even being insignificant.

Q. How much does it cost to run the unit other than a labour cost.
A. Waiting on results after major upgrade. Prior operating cost was about $4/hr.

Q. How many persons are required to operate the unit.
A. 2 people can easily operate the unit where 1 well trained competent person can handle all tasks.

Q. How much product can be processed in a day.
A. The units can be scaled up to process up to 5 tonne per hour (e.g. Dry hardwood) but this is dependent on the moisture content of the green waste. Higher moisture content slows the pyrolysis process but produces more premium wood vinegar and Liquid Biochar. A cubic meter per hour is the preferred unit of input waste measurement.

Q. Can the unit process all green waste from hardwood to palm fronds for example.
A. Any organic waste can be processed particularly agricultural waste and food waste. A shredder converts large organic matter (up to 1mtr long x 30cm diameter) to a more manageable size. Even grass clippings can be converted to biochar.

Q. Does the unit produce any other product other than Biochar.
A. Premium Wood Vinegar, Liquid Biochar and VitacharTM (a trademarked name, unique to AHCP).

Q. What safety mechanisms are in place in the event it needs to be shut down for any reason.
A. AHCP uses induction heating. High temperate generation will instantly cease on power loss. A temperature
gauge constantly displays working temperature. Three shut down procedures are in place. 1. The Gasifier, 2.
The Shredder, 3. The Generator.

Q. Are there any monitoring mechanisms in place to ensure consistent processing and operator safety.
A. Consistency of final product is dependent on the in-feed organic matter, the after grinding particle size,
temperature, time for processing and water content. CO2 and CO can be continuously monitored. Other
parameters can be measured. Operating temperature is displayed.

Q. Is the pyrolysis unit sold with warranty and support.
A. The unit is not sold outright. It is leased for a determined period and comes with full technical and operational support.

Q. Why a lease.
A. The pyrolysis unit has IP attached to it, made from special materials and a processing system which our technicians can only readily service if or when required.

Q. What is the cost of leasing the unit and what is the lease period.
A. For commercial in-confidence reasons the cost will be discussed with each individual client who enters formal discussions. In saying this, our modelling with consistent biomass input shows a substantial return in excess of the cost of the lease due to the nature of the products and the benefit derived from them. The initial lease period will also be discussed but as a benchmark 3 years.

Q. Is there a facility that can test the products for consistency and quality.
A. Australian laboratory Services (or ALS) and The National Measurement Institute (NMI) NATA certified laboratories have the ability to test products. A modest laboratory setup is all that is required. Also John Oweczkin, an Analytical Chemist, can test for the following – pH, Conductivity, ORP (Oxidation Reduction Potential), Bulk Density, Water Holding Capacity, Moisture Content, uV-Vis Scans, Methylene Blue Number (MEB) and prep samples for nutrient and metals analysis. A well sealed 1 kg sample is required should sample testing be requested. During negotiations sampling frequency and testing can be discussed with pricing. Though this could be setup after the unit is put into operation.

Q. What is Biochar and what are the benefits of using it for agriculture.
A. Biochar is another name for activated charcoal but exclusively using plant matter as the raw material. Uses for Biochar are many.
Examples of turning ‘waste’ into a resource are also many. Elimination of waste from agricultural sources such as sugarcane, hemp, cotton trash, nut seed waste, sawdust and discarded clothing are just some. Once biochar is produced from the waste it can be incorporated into poor soils to improve that soils characteristics. Activated charcoal has a water holding capacity. This can be taken advantage of by soaking it prior to application to soil. In times of heavy rain it can retain some of that water and easily give it up for the plant roots as the soil dries out.

Q. What is Vitachar and what is the difference to Biochar and liquid Biochar and its use.
A. Vitachar is a trademarked product created by AHCP. It differs from Biochar as it still has elements of the original waste plant material. It has a higher nutrient content, more so, than biochar.

Q. Is there a benefit of using liquid Biochar instead of Biochar solid and Vitachar solid.
A. Biochar and Vitachar are solids that can be placed on soil but is better incorporated into soil which requires ploughing of that soil. In some situations this is impossible or problematic. Liquid Biochar can be diluted as required, sprayed using irrigators or poured and allowed to seep into the soil.

Q. How much sequestration of CO2 is captured when applying Biochar, Vitachar and liquid Biochar to soil.
A. It is the growth of plant matter that traps the CO2 by photosynthesis. The faster the plant grows and the more bulk governs how much sequestration can occur and the bulk governs the quantity. Pyrolysis is different to burning as burning returns the CO2 back into the atmosphere whereas pyrolysis is high temperature decomposition of organic matter in the absence of air and in that process the charcoal or carbon is retained. The retained carbon is the sequestration. Wood Vinegar is captured during the manufacture of biochar which has many applications.

Q. Is the AMG Pyrolysis Technology an Australian designed and developed unit and who is the inventor.
A. The AMG unit was conceived, designed and developed over 15 years of R&D by Robert Tonks an Engineer
living in Brisbane, with continuous improvements over that time to be a world first and unique pyrolysis unit
for an Australian and global market.

Q. What makes the AMG Pyrolysis Technology unique.
A. There are a number of unique features to the unit which are covered by design IP but one that can be disclosed is the GREAT advantage Rob has with his induction process. He can quickly dial up the optimum operating temperature and manage throughput to process realistic quantities of raw matter consistently through the unit. AHCP is 99.9% confident no other biochar processor can do that. No other pyrolysis unit matches AMG’s energy efficiency. This allows it to be operated anywhere. You take it to the waste, not move the waste to the unit.

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