We are proud to present our latest newsletter. In this newsletter you will find an interview with Saskia Strating, process engineer at HoSt, updates on the construction of EMPYRO and more. We hope you will enjoy reading this issue.

With kind regards,
The BTG-BTL team

September 2014

Voor Nederlands klik hier a.u.b.

Brief introduction to ….Saskia Strating


Saskia Strating is project manager at HoSt. HoSt supplies within Empyro the knowledge and engineering of the combustor, the boiler and the flue gas cleaning.

What is your function at HoSt?

My role at HoSt is that of project manager and process engineer specialized in the field of wood fired power plants and flue gas cleaning. I have been working at HoSt for nearly 20 years now. Directly after graduating Chemical Engineering at the University of Twente I started to work for HoSt. My graduation project was in the field of desulphurization and HoSt was looking for someone with knowledge in that field. I never really felt the need to work somwehere else. Within HoSt you get a lot of freedom and responsability and my tasks are divers. Besides that, HoSt has experienced a lot of growth and development. This keeps my work exciting and interesting.

Can you elaborate on HoSt?

HoSt supplies bio-energy systems; bio-gas installations for farms and industry, wood fired boilers, combined heat and power plants and fluidized bed gasification plants. HoSt originated around 25 years ago from Holec Projects and Stork. Since 1999 it's an independent company. HoSt is one of the biggest suppliers of bio-gas installations for nearly any type of organic waste, like sewage sludge, biodegradable waste and slaughterhouse waste. HoSt currently has around 80 employees (60 in the Netherlands, 10 in Latvia, 3 in Poland and in both France and the United Kingdom 1) and is still growing. It is an innovative company where a new product is developed almost every year, for example thermal pressure hydrolysis, biogas generation to natural gas. HoSt has its own lab and work floor in Enschede. Managing director and owner of HoSt is Herman Klein Teeselink. To me he is the creative mind of HoSt; I am delighted to work with him.

What is the role of HoSt within Empyro?

HoSt is responsible for the part containing the combustor and the steam production, including the flue gas cleaning. Electricity is generated with steam and a turbine and the electricity is used in the pyrolysis process. The remaining 'low pressure steam' is transported to the neighbors of Empyro, Akzo Nobel. The strenght of Empyro is the extensive knowledge of steam. Empyro is a great project to work on, it is a step forward in creating a sustainable energy supply. The succes of this project will be crucial to the future of BTG-BTL and we will do everything we can to support this.

What are your interests besides your job?

I play tennis, a lot and with great pleasure. I also like to organize things for our tennis club; activities for the youth like camps and tournaments. I have children of my own; three boys of 11, 13 and 15 years old. So by living with 4 men both at home and at work I am always outnumbered as a woman. That's not a real problem, it's not something I dwell on. Furthermore, I love gardening. We have a big garden and a small vegetable garden where I like to grow all kinds of vegetables. Sometimes this succeeds better than other times.

At home I'm always trying to make life more sustainable, which occasionnaly drives my husband crazy. I'm always coming up with something new to address. Solar panels, a shower with heat recovery, woodstove, floor heating and so on. In the end we should do all we can do to pursue a sustainable society.

Latest tweets


Did you know ...?

  • It will be possible in the future to reach a negative footprint by using pyrolysis oil for the production of asphalt?
  • Despite last month's wheather the construction of Empyro is still on schedule.
  • When completed Empyro will be one of the largest biomass pyrolysis plants in the world.
  • There is a new Empyro project folder available for download.

Empyro celebrates breaking ground

On Wednesday May 21st Mr. Theo Rietkerk (Representative Economy, Energy and Innovation of the Province of Overijssel) has performed the ceremony that marks the start of construction of the Empyro factory in Hengelo, The Netherlands. At the construction site a billboard was unveiled and a foundation pillar donated by the Province of Overijssel was placed by Mr. Rietkerk. To celebrate this event BTG-BTL organized a tour of some of this projects local technology suppliers, among which are Broeze steelworks in Nijverdal, Stork Thermeq in Hengelo and Zeton in Enschede. Many of the 40 attending project participants and stakeholders expressed their enthusiasm at this oppertunity to witness Empyro's construction first hand.  



Empyro progress

The past weeks we've experienced a lot of rainy weather here in the Netherlands. This didn't stop the construction workers in Hengelo however! Most of the foundations have been completed, as can be seen on the webcam image below.

Construction currently focuses on the concrete table for the steam turbine and the steam pipe to Akzo Nobel as well as the protective wall around the pyrolysis oil tank. A month from now we will see the biomass dryer arriving on site as one of the first major components. It never rains in the Zeton workshop, which has certainly contributed to the fact that the construction of the pyrolsysis skid itself is still on schedule as well. This will be transported from Zeton to the Empyro site shortly after the biomass dryer. Below one can see the control room which has now been coupled to the installation under construction at Zeton.

The control room was built and furnished by Broeze in Nijverdal from which it has been transported to Zeton.

Also built by Broeze is the combustor (below) which has been disassembled, fitted with insulation and mounted back in its skid.

Below you can see the condenser being mounted in its skid. In a condenser oil vapours are cooled and become liquid.

In the meantime Zeton  has nearly finished plating the outside of the skids. This enables the installation to function as a self-supporting building when fully assembled on site. According to our planning this will be the case by the end of this year.

Around that time you can expect to receive the next issue of newsletter. Early next year the engineers and operators of BTG-BTL and Empyro will then take the installation into operation. A fascinating time, of which we will keep you posted of course!

Empyro operators started training

Once the construction of Empyro is complete we need people to operate and maintain this plant of course. Empyro plant manager Martin Risseeuw recently finished selecting a team with a mix of experience in different technical disciplines. The final team consists of 6 operators with combined more that a century of experience in operating installations for Akzo Nobel, DSM and Diversey. Areas of expertise are electrical engineering, process engineering, mechanical maintenance and marine engineering.

September 1st these 4 experienced operators and 2 young talents started their pyrolysis process training. First the process design and the control system of Empyro were extensively analyzed. Then the safety and procedures were treated. In order to work on Empyro's electrical systems in a safe and correct manner, everyone will also take a course in NEN3140. Since Empyro also contains a heat recovery steam generator and a steam turbine, the operators will be extensively trained to work with steam systems.

When asked to their motivation they reply unanimously: the challenge of working in a small cohesive team, in a new installation, based on a new technology and to start from day one with building a new organisation, that is wat drives these men!

Financial support


To demonstrate pyrolysis technology on a commercial scale the Empyro project is financially supported by the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission (Grant number 239357), by the Dutch government via the topsector Energy: TKI-BBE and by the province of Overijssel via the Energy Fund Overijssel.