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Project demonstration with AB Systems (UK) Ltd

The first of the wetland biomass to bioenergy demonstrations is due to be held at the end of the month on the 29th and 30th January 2014 in Somerset. The event will demonstrate the end-to-end delivery of harvesting wetland feed stocks, (predominately common reed and soft rush), through to their conversion into energy.

Pisten Bully with Kemp header harvesting reeds

Pisten Bully with Kemp header harvesting reeds

AB Systems (UK) Ltd has been developing a wetland harvesting system, which is first of its type to be trialled in the UK.

They have combined leisure and agriculture, using the Pisten Bulley Greentech tracked vehicle, as a base machine typically used to engineer ski slopes, with a Kemp header for cutting and collecting, regularly used in agriculture.

Once harvested the material is stored and dried, if needed, in AgBags, ready then to be processed through a mobile briquetting machine.

 This free event will be of interest to businesses and academics keen to explore opportunities relating to:

  • harvesting wetland vegetation using the latest technologies
  • storage of wetland biomass using AgBag Systems
  • conversion of wetland biomass to bioenergy (briquettes)

A morning of talks and discussion and lunch will be held at The Pipers Inn, Ashcott. Practical demonstrations will take place in the afternoon at Lilac Farm, Westhay, Somerset, and Ham Wall RSPB reserve. Please wear warm waterproof clothing and note that wellingtons are needed for visiting the wetland areas.

Booking for the event is essential, to register an interest and for more information contact Jenni McDonnell:

Or you can register your interest via the InnovateUK website.

Filed under: Bioenergy

Comments: 2 Comments on Project demonstration with AB Systems (UK) Ltd
Posted on: Jan 16 2014

2 Responses to “Project demonstration with AB Systems (UK) Ltd”

  1. Sally Mills says:

    I am not sure whether this question is in reference to the demonstration event or wetland management per se; however I will attempt answer in relation to both.

    For the demonstration event, the harvesting is to be undertaken at Ham Wall, which sits in the Brue Valley and is a wetland created in an area that has previously been extracted for peat. As a human-made system, full hydrological control is in place across the wider site to enable habitat management works to be undertaken within the specific areas needed as part of that site.

    In a wider context, every wetland across the UK is site specific, both in its water control and its function. In many cases whether that is the Somerset Levels and Moors, or the flood plain of the Strathspey, Inverness-shire, nature conservation and flood management work hand in hand. Many sites such as for example West Sedgemoor in Somerset; Insh Marshes in Inverness-shire; Exminster Marshes in Devon, to name a few, are both important sites for nature conservation and significant flood plains – the management for both goes hand in hand and always has. Using the harvested vegetation will not effect their role in flood management, but in fact could be argued that it will enhance it. Rather than leaving cut material on the ground, that can inhibit water flow, block ditches and culverts, this material will be removed and put to good use. The wetland management will only help to maintain these areas and increase their flood resilience.

  2. G Roberts says:

    Has anyone thought about the impact on flood resilience of this?

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