Solid Biofuels

Solid Biofuel as a sustainable, carbon lean fuel is becoming increasingly important as the UK strives to reduce its carbon emissions and dependency on fossil fuels.

SOCOTEC is fully aware of the importance of biomass and is proud to be involved with the biggest biomass projects in the world.

SOCOTEC has unparalleled expertise in solid fuel inspection and testing, specialising in low carbon alternative fuels such as biomass. With a wide range of inspection, sampling, preparation and analysis services available, SOCOTEC is the market leader in UK biomass testing.


SOCOTEC’s team of trained and accredited samplers can provide 24/7 365 days a year coverage for all of your sampling and inspection requirements for fuel. We can provide independent, UKAS accredited sampling services on any solid biofuel consignment whether it is moved by road, rail, or ship.

With a permanent presence at key UK ports, SOCOTEC is well placed to provide draught surveying, cargo superintendency and sampling services for imported or exported fuel cargos.  Our portside teams, which include master mariners, provide vital information to clients throughout the loading or discharging operation, protecting the quality of the cargo and ensuring advance notification of any problems such as contamination.


As the energy market continues to evolve, a wider range of solid biofuels are now required to help the transition to a low carbon, sustainable energy sector. As leading experts in solid biofuel testing, we have a wealth of experience in developing sampling and analysis procedures for new and innovative solid biofuels including:

  • Recycled wood 
  • Energy crops (e.g. miscanthus)
  • Wood pellets
  • Virgin woodchip
  • Agricultural by-products
  • Food manufacturing by-products (e.g. peanut husks)


Quality Matters

We understand the importance of achieving consistent fuel quality, for both producers and consumers of solid biofuels. SOCOTEC was the first laboratory in the UK to gain extensive accreditation for the analysis of solid biofuels. Our comprehensive range of UKAS accredited sampling, preparation and analysis services include:

  • Sampling
  • Sample preparation
  • Pellet component sizing
  • Pellet durability
  • Moisture
  • Ash
  • Sulphur
  • Chlorine
  • Calorific Value
  • Elemental Analysis
  • Biomass content

Quality of service is just as important as the integrity of the data we provide; our client services and account management teams are on hand to ensure that clients get the information they need, on time and in the required format.

Where there are specific analysis parameters that are of critical importance, SOCOTEC operates an early warning system, alerting clients to any results that may result in a fuel being outside of the required specification so that action can be taken as quickly as possible. 


Having worked closely with Ofgem, SOCOTEC is fully aware of the need for compliance with sampling and analytical standards and can:

  • Assist you in completing your initial Fuel Measurement and Sampling (FMS) questionnaire
  • Provide you with bespoke sampling plans
  • Provide advice on all matters relating to biofuel quality
  • Help determine the correct amount of Renewable Certificates (ROCs) for our clients

Further to this, SOCOTEC can provide technical audits of mechanical sampling systems, undertake bias tests and even provide upfront bespoke consultancy regarding the application and design of your sampling system.


SOCOTEC has a long history of method development and this tradition continues with solid biofuels. In fact, the company has represented the UK internationally during the cooperative development of EN and ISO sampling and analysis standards.  This involvement means that we are at the forefront of ensuring that our clients remain complaint with all relevant standards, even as they are updated.