Demonstrated Waste-to-Energy Biocoal Technology

HM3 Energy is licensing its waste-to-energy biocoal technology. Its patented TorrB® technology was perfected over the last two years in a demonstration plant using a commercially scaled torrefier and densifier.

  • Commercial Equipment – The torrefier (1.5 tons/hour) and densifier (5 tons/hour) were commercial in scale. All other equipment was commercial in design.

  • Numerous Test Runs – Multi-day production test runs with continuously operating, linked equipment were conducted. A variety of feedstocks, including juniper and pine forest residue, mill residue and agricultural residue, were made into sturdy, water-resistant biocoal.

  • Successful Testburns – HM3’s TorrB® biocoal was successfully testburned in Western Research Institute’s coal boiler in 2017. Not only did it grind easily prior to feeding to the boiler, the combustion sustained throughout the test was comparable to western (sub-bituminous) coal.

What is Torrefaction?

Innovative

HM3’s streamlined torrefaction and densification technologies are the result of 10 years of careful research and development.

  • Simple Torrefier Design – The mass flow torrefaction system is inexpensive to build and easy to maintain. It has only one moving part, a feedstock leveler.

  • Densification – HM3 Energy’s densification system uses a densifier modified with our patented die cooling system and a unique post-densification conditioning process. Together, they produce sturdy, water-resistant TorrB® biocoal without need to add binders.

  • Cheapest Feedstock – HM3 has the only torrefaction process that can easily use forest waste to consistently produce high quality TorrB® biocoal; other torrefaction processes require clean wood chips as feedstock.

HM3 Energy has received a US Forest Service 2019 Wood Innovation Grant Award. Wood Innovations Grants support development of products that use excess forest material. HM3 is performing due diligence on a commercial torrefaction plant in Northern Arizona.

Senior Technical Team Members

HM3 Energy’s technical team members have all worked in multi-national corporations and have deep knowledge and experience in product/process development, chemical plant construction and operations, wood biomass chemistry and business management.

Hiroshi Morihara, Ph.D.CEO / Founder
Hiroshi’s prior experience includes the development of an innovative polysilicon technology from R&D through pilot plant to full commercial production. In 1977 Hiroshi and HM3 Energy team member William Breneman were intimately involved in technical and managerial leadership roles in the Low Cost Silicon Solar Array Project (while working at Union Carbide Corporation), funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.
Hiroshi was also instrumental in facilitating the integration of technology purchased by Union Carbide from Komatsu Electronic Materials for the pyrolysis of silane into polysilicon rods. This technology was demonstrated in the semi-commercial scale facility and later up-scaled to a $250 million, 1200 ton/year facility which began operation in Moses Lake, WA in 1985.
The plant went through a $1.7 billion expansion in 2011; however, the basic process remained fundamentally unchanged as the leading technology for low cost and high quality silicon for use in both electronic and photovoltaic applications.
Hiroshi led two biotechnology companies in the Bay Area between 1990 and 2000. He first served as president of America Peptide Company for four years, turning the company into a profitable operation that continues today. He then served for six years as Chairman and CEO for another peptide company, Peninsula Laboratories, which was sold shortly after Hiroshi’s tenure.

Howard Dawson, Ph.D.IP and Quality Assurance Manager
Howard has spent much of his career in process and product development, as well as quality control assurance. Prior to HM3 Energy, Howard worked with Hiroshi in facilitating the integration of technology purchased by Union Carbide from Komatsu Electronic Materials for the pyrolysis of silane into polysilicon rods. As quality assurance and R/D manager, Howard contributed to the success of the polysilicon project by making the product attractive not only to the solar cell industry but also to the semiconductor industry. This technology was demonstrated in the semi-commercial scale facility and later scaled up to a $250 million, 1200 ton/year facility which began operation in Moses Lake, WA in 1985.
Prior to his polysilicon work, Howard Dawson worked many years in the pulp and paper industries acquiring a deep understanding of wood chemistry and chemical byproducts. At Crown Zellerbach, he worked in quality control and product development, where he developed new industrial uses for wood extractives, lignin and lignin sulfonates.
Until recently Howard consulted internationally in the semiconductor industry, primarily in Japan, Korea and China.
William H. BrenemanProcess Engineering Manager
Prior to joining HM3, Bill worked closely with Hiroshi developing an innovative production process for polysilicon technology from R&D through pilot plant to full commercial production. In 1977 Hiroshi and Bill were intimately involved in technical and managerial leadership roles in the Low Cost Silicon Solar Array Project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The goal of the overall program was to demonstrate the feasibility and practicality of production of terrestrial photovoltaic systems based on silicon. While working for Union Carbide Corp. under a Department of Energy/Jet Propulsion Lab Contract, Bill was responsible as Principal Investigator for developing a process for large scale production of silane with a quality suitable for the production of “solar grade” silicon. Bill also developed analytical methods for monitoring the quality of the silane and polysilicon.
Bill worked with Hiroshi in facilitating the integration of technology purchased by Union Carbide from Komatsu Electronic Materials for the pyrolysis of silane into polysilicon rods. This technology was demonstrated in the semi-commercial scale facility and later up-scaled to a $250 million, 1200 ton/year facility which began operation in Moses Lake, WA in 1985. As the program moved through the various stages of development, Bill became the lead design engineer for a world scale facility designed to produce silane and polycrystalline silicon.

“High costs have been a major stumbling block to advancing a robust commercial production of biocoal. HM3 Energy has taken the time to address all factors impacting cost feedstock costs, simplicity of design, maintenance costs, energy efficiency and a process that doesn’t use any binders at all to create a true waste-to-energy biocoal technology that easily competes with white pellets at the coal plant burner tip.”

Hiroshi Morihara, HM3 Energy CEO/Founder

Biocoal: 2nd Generation Biomass Energy

With recent technological advances, biocoal is poised to become the biomass energy of choice. HM3 Energy is now licensing its environmentally friendly, commercially viable waste-to-energy biocoal technology.

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