Agri-Tech Producers licenses torrefaction technology

South Carolina-based Agri-Tech Producers LLC has secured an exclusive license for a torrefaction technology developed by North Carolina State University. Torrefaction is a process in which biomass is heated in a low-oxygen environment, which causes volatile organic compounds, water and hemicellulose to separate from cellulose and lignin. The process creates a carbon-neutral fuel that is easier to transport and store. Agri-Tech Producers is working with manufactures to develop torrefaction machines that will utilize the licensed technology. The machines are expected to be commercially available near the end of 2009.