BioPAD team has been involved in developing a new fuel type called Northern Energy Bamboo (NEB). With help of genetic manipulation, this Laos origin Bamboo can now growing in Northern Europe, including the most Northern regions of Finland, Sweden and Norway. Researcher Rubartus Princenhofner from Finnish Forest Research Institute visited in Laos on March 2014 to compare the growing results of Bamboo in Laos and plantations in Finland, Sweden, UK and Ireland. The results of NEB are promising as it grows five times faster than willow in Ireland. At the age of 17 years NEB is 17 meters tall and can reach the volume of 1,5 m3. Like other Bamboos it can grow really thick and it doesn’t need any harvesting. “Of course the growing is not that fast as the original plant in Laos but we are happy of the trial and new genetic manipulated plant” said Mikael Nivpandason from the Finnish Forest Research Institute. According to Dr. Larry Piglet the secret of success of NEB in Northern Europe has been that it can grows also during the night. The normal growing period in Nordic countries can be longer because of length of the day and availability of daylight comparing to Laos.
Combustion of Northern Energy Bamboo have been also promising. During the test, the ash content was lower and heat caloric value nearly same as normal wood. What makes NEB more interesting is the amount of gum inside the Bamboo. First laboratory test showed that it has nearly same structure and fuel properties as pyrolysis oil and could replace heating oil in bigger scale boilers. There is no research yet for it suitability for bio diesel in transportation.
The research findings have also been welcomed by the researchers’ BioPAD colleague Dr. Niels Jemas from ERI, who emphasised the fact that the special NEB roots sequestrate carbon. “This makes the findings of the Finnish trial even more valuable” he said.
The biggest challenges in Finland plantation trial have been damages caused by pink Finnish forest hogs.
Pic.2 Pink Finnish forest hog eating pine
If you are interested in getting these new plants or would like more information please contact Researcher Mikko Nivala, firstname.lastname@example.org during 1st of April between 16:55-17.00