Bast Fibre Decortication

All bast fibre plants — hemp, flax, kenaf, jute and others — share a common characteristic: fine fibres running lengthwise along the stems with a woody (cellulosic) core in the middle. As they come off the field, these stems are not especially valuable. But separating the two main components (fibre and core) opens up possibilities for using these materials to make a wide range of products, many of which are currently made from petroleum (oil). And those possibilities mean increased value for the stems, opportunities for manufacturers to source feedstocks locally, and a way to use carbon neutral, renewal materials rather than non-renewable oil.

Over the past few years, Natural Capital Resources Inc. has been working in collaboration with Hill Agra Machinery to develop a Canadian technology to achieve this separation. The separation process is referred to as decortication.  There are two main mechanical approaches to decortication: roller breaker and hammer mill systems. Enzymes and other biochemical approaches are being developed as well but to date, we have focused on mechanical systems, specifically roller breaker technology.

Hill Agra-NCR now has three scales of decortication equipment coming into the market:

Model 1524

  • 15 sets of rollers; 24 inch wide roller bed; input conveyor, reverse conveyor and side discharge conveyor (for core); output conveyor for fibre; hydraulic drive system; can be run off tractor remotes or adapted for PTO or electric motor
  • Portable but has stanchions to secure for stationary use
  • $115,000 plus shipping, taxes and any applicable duties

 

Model 1536

  • 15 sets of rollers; 36 inch wide roller bed; input conveyor, reverse conveyor and side discharge conveyor (for core); output conveyor for fibre
  • gear and sprocket system with chain; hydraulic drive system; can be run off tractor remotes or adapted for PTO or electric motor
  • Portable but has stanchions to secure for stationary use; side discharge conveyor is retractable via winch for shipment or movement
  • $150,000 plus shipping, taxes and any applicable duties

 

Model 2060:

  • 20 sets of rollers; 60 inch wide roller bed
  • bale loading conveyor, bale opening and metering system; input conveyor, reverse conveyor and side discharge conveyor (for core); output conveyor for fibre; secondary fibre cleaning system; dust collection system
  • gear and sprocket system with chain; hydraulic drive system; can be run off tractor remotes or adapted for PTO or electric motor including three-phase power
  • Can be moved but has stanchions to secure for stationary use
  • $1,500,000 plus shipping, taxes and any applicable duties