Biomass – Hog Fuel

Hog fuel is the basic feedstock for biomass-fired power plants and is becoming a hot commodity and it is the single biggest on-going cost item for energy plants.

Wood wastes now recovered for use as biomass fuels in modern energy plants, are materials that have historically been landfilled or burned in open piles on-site.
Recovered wood fuel products replace non-renewable fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas at the industrial energy facilities that use them.
Wood is a renewable resource, trees absorb carbon dioxide during growth and emit it during combustion, thereby recycling atmospheric carbon rather adding new greenhouse gases to our environment.


All biomass combustion facilities in the United States today must meet strict environmental standards by carefully controlling air emissions and removing pollutants. Most industrial hog fuel users operate cogeneration facilities that produce heat or steam for internal energy needs as well as electricity that in many cases is supplied back onto the regional power grid.
Each ton of urban wood waste used as hog fuel produces approximately 10.4 million Btu’s of energy – that’s the equivalent of nearly two barrels of oil and over 3 Megawatts of electricity – enough to power the average U.S. household for nearly 4 months.

What makes good hog fuel? When ‘greenfield’ plants are designed, boiler technology is usually selected based on the type of fuel available. When existing boilers are converted to burn biomass in ‘brownfield’ projects, the fuel must be matched to the existing boiler in order to minimize required boiler modifications. While individual fuel characteristics can vary considerably, there are four main fuel quality parameters that must be met to ensure good boiler operation, including maintaining:

  • Consistent moisture content
  • Consistent particle size
  • Minimal contamination in order to minimize ash content
  • Consistent calorific, proximate and ultimate values

Rawlings Wood Hogs offers a complete line of wood waste processing equipment for helping mills in the sawmill and plywood industries convert their wood residuals into valuable wood fiber products with over 30 of experience we have the knowledge to assist our customers in designing and selecting the right equipment to meet their specifications.