Biomass developments show benefits of De Boer's storage solutions

23 March 2011

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Clients seeking robust, efficient and flexible storage solutions in the rapidly expanding biomass sector are turning to structure specialist De Boer – with particular opportunities seen within the UK’s ports sector.

Biomass pellet storage
The company, which is a leading provider of semi-permanent accommodation to the commercial sector, has recently completed a 4,900-square-metre biomass pellet storage facility a Swedish client.

Renewable energy
The contract – and the phenomenal growth of the renewable energy sector – is now leading to increasing interest within the UK market.

Leading ports operators
In particular, De Boer is already exploring potential opportunities with a number of leading port operators – including with Associated British Ports (ABP), the UK’s largest and leading group in the sector and for which it has previously supplied a bulk storage facility.

Plant, animal and biological materials
Jonathan Keyes, De Boer’s Sales Manager – Commercial, said: “The opportunities offered by creating renewable energy from plant, animal and biological materials is leading to increasing interest in the biomass sector.

Flexible storage solutions
“However, growth in this market will inevitably lead to a greater requirement for flexible storage solutions, which is why De Boer is actively exploring opportunities with ABP and other leading industry players. We see this as an exciting growth area.”

Robust All Weather Halls
De Boer’s recent contract in Sweden involved the company providing one of its robust All Weather Hall structures to a client in Gävle, an historic city in Norrland, on the country’s east coast.

High-barrel, vaulted roof
The structure measured 38 metres by 130 metres and reached approximately 17 metres at its apex height. The design used a high-barrel, vaulted roof, providing the facility with roughly 70,000 cubic metres of storage space.

Access platforms and staircase
Other features included an internal materials conveyor system with access platforms and staircase, electrically operated roller-shutter doors and translucent roof sails to provide natural lighting. The entire project, which also offered vehicle access, pedestrian access and emergency exits, took just 12 weeks to complete.

Salt and minerals storage
The Gävle assignment marked another breakthrough for De Boer’s All Weather Hall, which was first created to withstand the rigours of the worst of Scandinavia’s winter weather. The steel-framed, clearspan structure has since been used across Europe for a wide range of storage purposes – from salt and minerals to vehicles, plant and machinery.

Imports and exports
De Boer’s previous work with ABP involved a nine-week construction project in 2009 to create a 3,500-square-metre warehouse on a dockside at the Port of Newport in Wales. The ports operator turned to De Boer when additional space was required as a result of the growing amount of imports and exports.

Galvanised steel frame
De Boer provided ABP with a 100-metre-long, 35-metre-wide All Weather Hall constructed with 70 tonnes of galvanised steel frame which has a life expectancy of more than 60 years.

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