Belfast’s Silform Technologies raises €2.2m to reduce coal waste

22 Aug 2019

Image: Silform Technologies

Silform Technologies has developed an enhanced biocoal that emits 30pc less CO2 than coal and 70pc more heat than a biomass wood pellet.

Today (22 August), Belfast-based Silform Technologies announced that it has secured €2.2m in funding.

The company has developed an environmentally clean, high-volume, low-cost pelletising system for the conversion of coal waste deposits into pellets that have economic value.

The company is developing a metallurgical coal pellet for use in the steel industry and the production of an enhanced biocoal, which emits 30pc less CO2 than coal, while also emitting 70pc more heat than a biomass wood pellet.

The company’s aim is to reduce the environmental impact of coal waste and reduce the costs that mining operators and government agencies are subjected to.

Commercialising products

The funding round was led by the Bank of Ireland Kernel Capital Growth Fund, in syndication with private investors.

The investment will be used to establish a pilot plant in the north of Ireland, and scale the research and development team in collaboration with commercial partners to develop broader applications.

Allen Martin, partner at Kernel Capital, said: “Following on from our initial investment, the company has successfully developed and patented innovative technology that has the potential to deliver significant environmental and economic returns. This investment will enable the company to establish a pilot plant in conjunction with its partners.”

Ken Flockhart, CEO of Silform Technologies, added: “With the continued support of our investors, we have successfully developed the patented FuelForm energy changeover technology, the precursor to our future MetaForm and BioForm range, and with the completion of our pilot plant we are poised to move to the next stage in commercialising our products.”

The company’s chair, Mervyn McCall, said that he could see this technology having a “significant impact” not just locally, “but also on a global scale across a number of industries, and indeed the environment”.

“This funding marks a major milestone for the company, which can now look to developing the technology further and enhancing the solution for specific markets,” McCall added.

Kelly Earley was a journalist with Silicon Republic