Disruptive cyclone-based technology



Solarbox, a Spanish engineering company specilized in biomass combustion service provision, realized a high need for affordable and extremely efficient particle emissions reduction for the increasing biomass sector in order to comply with EU and global legislation. A close collaboration with the University of Vigo’s expert group in biomass combustion and emission reduction technology redeNERGY as well as the long-term relationship of TAMA and KSM with Solarbox as main supplier for their products in Spain, led to the development of CYCLOMB.
It is an innovative, highly efficient and competitive cost solution for Particulate Matter abatement resulting from the integration of a cyclone-based technology and a highly combustion-efficient boiler. Our industrial partners, TAMA and KSM, are specialised manufacturers of Particulate matter abatement technologies and biomass boilers, respectively. TAMA is world leader in the design, manufacturing and supply of products for air filtration and purification from dust, fumes and gases.
They work since more than 25 years in this business. KSM has more than 20 years of experience in the boiler industry offering solutions in top of the energy from biomass state of the art. TAMA and KSM provide key technical expertise for the two main components of our CYCLOMB disruptive solution, the advanced cyclone-based solution and the flue gas recirculation adapted boiler. Solarbox and redeNERGY integrate the main elements of CYCLOMB utilizing their engineering and developer’s expertise for its further demonstration and scale-up to reach market readiness of the product. The four partners gather more than 70 years of expertise in developing and commercializing with a focus in Europe and beyond.

The highly increasing biomass industrial sector is now facing important challenges as the EU will implement stricter particulate matter (PM) emission limits under 20 mg/m3 by 20301 PM is considered the pollutant with the highest risk for health damage2 and associated to acute respiratory infections, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumoconiosis, cataract and blindness and pulmonary tuberculosis. The sector needs to decrease to maximum PM emissions, yet some countries (Germany, Denmark and UK) have already implemented the previous legislation. However, there are only partial solutions available including Electrostatic Precipitators (ESPs) and Fabric Filters, which offer 95-99% efficiency in PM emission reduction. Their main drawbacks include additional investment costs of as much as 100% with respect to the combustion system and a rise of operation and maintenance costs for heat production in 6-12%. Biomass is the principal renewable energy source used for heating, accounting for 66.1% of the renewable energy produced in the EU.


Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness.

Europe is committed to reducing emissions. The ’20-20-20’ targets set back in 2007 by the EU leaders mark the existing European energy and climate legislation. These targets aim for 20% reduction of CO2 emissions, 20% increase in energy efficiency and a 20% renewable energy use by the year 2020. Furthermore, the European Commission put forward the ‘Roadmap for moving to a competitive low carbon economy in 2050’ and the ‘Energy Roadmap 2050’, aimed at involving the heating and cooling sectors into the transformation of the energy system.

These sectors can positively contribute to reaching the EU energy and climate targets by offering thermal comfort solutions readily available in the European market. These solutions can critically improve the energy efficiency of European buildings as of today. Among these there is District Heating, to which CYCLOMB is particularly targeted and optimized for (1-2 MW market). Stricter regulations will also apply soon to other power ranges (e.g. <1MW range) as the EU is already recommending to assess applying stricter limits as well for other plants.

There are several directives on energy efficiency and uptake of renewable energies in European Buildings:

  • The Directive 2004/107/EC and Directive 2008/50/EC on ambient air quality, aimed to reduce concentrations of pollutants and setting standards and target dates for reducing concentrations of fine particles.
  • The 2009 Renewable Energies Directive (RES) (Directive 2009/28/EC) for the long-term development of renewable energies across different sectors.
  • The 2010 Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD, Directive 2010/31/EU) states the need for Member States to set minimum requirements for building energy efficiency, certification and inspection.

CYCLOMB is enclosed in the renewable energy sector, particularly in the biomass industry. The renewable energy industry is one of Europe’s fastest growing sectors. It is expected that the use of bioenergy will double by 2020, creating a forecast number of jobs of 800,000 by the same year. Fostering the use of alternative and renewable energy sources can help solve this problem. Biomass heating systems can considerably create EU fuel independence by switching to alternative fuels.

By coupling research and innovation, Horizon 2020 has helping us to achieve our new market product. CYCLOMB project receives funding from the European Union'Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 760551.  


  • PM2.5 emissions of less than the limit  of 20 mg/m3, within most stringent limits currently imposed (startingby 2030 in the entire EU).
  • 66% lower investment cost than most advanced solutions in the market with regards to boiler and PM abatement combined.
  • Cyclone based PM abatement technology with a low price ,meaning 33-50% reduction versus alternative PM abatement solutions.
  • Operational and Maintenance Costs ≥80% lower than other efficient technologies with integrated solutions.
  • Boiler combustion efficiency higher (up to 95% for CYCLOMB vs. <90% other boilers) and lower emissions (80 mg/m3 vs. 150 mg/m3) than available products in market.