FR Technical Development reports and tools

Reports on studies undertaken by Forest Research Technical Development on woodfuel related topics


These tools are provided free of charge by the Biomass Energy Centre to give users general guidance and benchmarks, relevant to the UK in August 2009, relating to the use of wood as a fuel.

These tools do not cover all the parameters relating to wood-fuelled installations and projects, and as such are no substitute for project-specific expert advice.

While the Biomass Energy Centre endeavours to provide accurate information and data, it makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability or suitability of the guidance and benchmarks contained or generated herein. 

The user understands that neither the Biomass Energy Centre nor the Forestry Commission accept any liability for any loss or damage whatsoever arising from any use of or reliance on these tools and that that use of these tools does not constitute a contract wherein any conditions, warranties or other terms implied by statute or common law can be relied upon.

Metadata for TD tools

A short document setting out the background to the Woodfuel boilers installation design guidance calculators (PDF - 89 kB)

Estimating woodfuel potential - Measurement protocol

This tool was developed as part of a project to estimate the woodfuel potential of the Woolhope Dome area of Herefordshire. The final report is available here.

This protocol is provided free of charge by the Biomass Energy Centre, based on the abbreviated tariffing methods in 'Forest Mensuration - A handbook for practitioners - Robert W Matthews and Ewan D Mackie - Forestry Commission'. It is designed to help woodland owners and managers to assess the standing timber volume in their woodland in a simple manner

(Excel Spreadsheet - 786 kB)

Boiler Sizing Tool (V2)

This tool will help you to size a woodfuel boiler based on the heat requirements of an existing or projected building or group of buildings. It will also assess the proportion of heat requirements covered by a wooduel boiler and the proportion covered by a back-up boiler at low or peak load times (fossil fuel or secondary small woodfuel boiler)

(Excel Spreadsheet - 715 kB)

Estimating Fuel Costs

This calculator is designed to allow cost estimates and cost comparisons for different types of fuels. The assumptions and baseline figures used for these calculations appear in the table in the first 'energy cost' sheet

(Excel Spreadsheet - 96 kB)

Estimating Fuel Requirement

This calculator assesses the quantity of woodfuel required to meet defined heating requirements for logs and woodchips fuelled installations

(Excel Spreadsheet - 75 kB)

Woodfuel Price Conversion Spreadsheet

This spreadsheet has been written to help produces of woodfuel estimate the increase in value of the product due to processing

(Excel spreadsheet - 80 kB)


FR Woodfuel Catalogue

A catalogue of woodfuel related reports from Forest Research Technical Development (PDF - 216 kB)


Chipping clearfell tops in East Anglia

(PDF - 640 kB)

Woodfuel trial Rivox, Ae Forest District

(PDF - 334 kB)

Rumster Forest Northern Wood Heat woodfuel pilot study

(PDF - 1.5 MB)

Woodfuel production from a thinning operation

(PDF - 331 kB)

Accumulating Small Stems

(PDF - 3.7 Mb)


East Anglia whole tree chipping

(PDF - 684 kB)

Random length smallwood chipping recovery compared to conventional shortwood systems

(PDF - 568 kB)

Chipper review

(PDF - 1.1 MB)

Large chippers

(PDF - 396 kB)

A Comparison between a hand-fed and a mechanically fed chipper

(PDF - 501 kB)

Small scale chippers - standards review

(PDF - 249 kB)

Solid timber to woodchip volume ratio

(PDF - 134 kB)


Small roundwood – pilot drying trials

(PDF - 592 kB)

Active woodchip drying trials - 1

(PDF - 426 kB)

Active woodchip drying trials - 2

(PDF - 323 kB)

Woodchip drying

A review of woodchip drying techniques (PDF - 253 kB)

Woodfuel & burners

Woodfuel burning systems

(PDF - 370 kB)

Woodfuel: Relating quality and specification to burner types

(PDF - 723 kB)

Energy value assessment of woodchips from trees of different ages

(PDF - 499 kB)


Presentation of brash for baling from clearfell harvesting

(PDF - 482 kB)

Brown brash baling – (An appendix to IPIN 17/06)

(PDF - 373 kB)

Calorific value of brash bales

(PDF - 642 kB)

Small scale

An evaluation of small scale forwarding methods in a broadleaf thinning operation

(PDF - 322 kB)

Supply of woodfuel from small woodlands for small scale heating

(PDF - 173 kB)

Compact tractors in forestry

(PDF - 729 kB)

Outdoor workshops - Review of small-scale harvesting equipment

(PDF - 1.7 MB)

Small-scale systems for harvesting woodfuel products

(PDF - 402 kB)

Systems for adding value – firewood processors, peelers and pointers

(PDF - 133 kB)

Woodfuel production from small undermanaged woodlands

(PDF - 190 kB)

Short rotation coppice

Harvesting and comminution of short rotation coppice

(PDF - 173 kB)

Short rotation coppice harvesting: ground damage and yield effects

(PDF - 425 kB)

Supply chain

Developing best practice guidelines to support local small to medium scale woodfuel production

(PDF - 1.2 MB)

Technical Development extended summaries

Calorific value of brash bales

(PDF - 1.1 MB)

Trial of portable moisture meters for assessing moisture content in wood chips and roundwood

(PDF - 600 kB)

Mechanised harvesting of sweet chestnut coppice

(PDF - 334 kB)

Mechanised stump harvesting

(PDF - 302 kB)

Medium-scale woodchips supply

(PDF - 840 kB)

Residue harvesting methods

(PDF - 173 kB)

Short Rotation Forestry trials - England

(PDF - 786 kB)

Short Rotation Forestry trials - Scotland

(PDF - 963 kB)

Small scale chippers - standards review

(PDF - 1.2 MB)

Small-scale log supply

(PDF - 2,300 kB)

Solid Timber to woodchip volume ratio

(PDF - 115 kB)

Trial of acoustic hammer tool for moisture content measurement in roundwood

(PDF - 237 kB)

Wood pellets production

(PDF - 226 kB)

Woodchips drying review

(PDF - 92 kB)

Evaluation of Methods for Drying Woodchips & Woodfuel Drying and Storage

(PDF - 450 kB)

Woodfuel Processors for the Small and Medium Scale

(PDF - 520 kB)

Woodfuel production from a mixed Scots and Corsican pine clearfell

(PDF - 533 kB)

Woodfuel production from coppice restoration

(PDF - 538 kB)

Woodfuel production from small diameter stems

(PDF - 365 kB)

Woodfuel production from a thinning operation in Sitka spruce

(PDF - 181 kB)

Woodfuel production from pine thinning

(PDF - 320 kB)