Project meeting of STEP at the site of the company ATS - Agro Trading & Solutions in Hardegsen (Photo: DBFZ)

Heat Power Biomass technologies

Project ID 03KB146

CHP+beercoal - Increase of the economic energy efficiency in brewing processes through combined heat and power and climate-neutral charcoal production from brewery spent grains

Charcoal from brewery spent grains (Photo: Fraunhofer Umsicht)


  • 01.08.2018 – 31.10.2020


Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology UMSICHT, Institute Branch Sulzbach-Rosenberg
An der Maxhütte 1
92237 Sulzbach-Rosenberg

Rolf Jung – project leader
Telephone: +49 (0)9661 908-433

Fabian Stenzel – project coordinator
Telephone: +49 (0)9661 908-432


03KB146B - Schneider Weisse G. Schneider & Sohn GmbH
03KB146C - Holzkohlewerk Lüneburg

Associated partners

Cooperation partners



In a thermochemical conversion plant (TCR®), brewery spent grains of Schneider Weisse is converted into biochar, gas and oil for electricity, heat and cooling production in a directly coupled CHP plant. The efficient energetic integration of the conversion plant in the location of the brewery will examined and, in the context of commercial marketing, the produced biochar will tested with regard to the possibility of charcoal application.


The aim of the demonstration project is the efficient and economic use of brewery spent grains both in energetic as well as material terms, on the one hand to increase the efficiency of the brewery and on the other hand, to reduce the uncertainties in the recovery of brewery spent grains.


Fraunhofer UMSICHT

  • Conditioning (drying, pelletizing) of brewery spent grains for the conversion experiments
  • Production of biochar with different process parameters
  • Energy-/mass balances
  • Energetic integration of the conversion plant in the location of the brewery
  • Analysis of the charcoal briquettes (e.g. checking the smoke development)
  • Establishment of various product application scenarios for charcoal briquette

Schneider Weiße

  • Delivery of fresh brewer spent grains for the conversion trials
  • Providing operating data on load paths of electricity, heat and cold consumption
  • Creation of a heat and electricity utilization concept with highest possible efficiency
  • Technical requirements for the implementation of TCR® technology at the site

Holzkohlewerk Lüneburg

  • Carrying out various briquetting experiments with different biochar batches of brewery spent grains
  • Verification of briquetting and determination of standardized briquetting parameters
  • Production of charcoal briquettes based on DIN EN 1860-2
  • Overall profitability calculation


Fraunhofer UMSICHT

  • Conversion trials
  • Biochar analytic
  • Energetic integration
  • Evaluation and optimization

Schneider Weiße

  • Heat and electricity utilization concept
  • Recycling of brewery spent grain
  • Implementation of the TCR® technology

Holzkohlewerk Lüneburg

  • Briquetting
  • Production of charcoal briquettes
  • Economic Evaluation


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