• Rothes CoRDe - Speyside

Aalborg Energie Technik a/s Biomass Cogeneration Plant

Rothes CoRDe, Speyside, UK

The Rothes CoRDe plant is a biomass-fired CHP plant located in Rothes, Speyside, Scotland.

The plant has an annual fuel input of 115,000 tonnes of wet draff from local whisky distilleries and 60,000 tonnes of uncontaminated wood. The plant generates 7.2 MWe, equivalent to supplying 9,000 homes with electricity.


The combined heat and power (CHP) plant also supplies approx. 12 t/h of process steam to a pot ale/syrup processing plant. The CHP plant saves 64,000 tonnes of CO2/year.


Performance Test

The biomass-fired CHP plant was successfully commissioned and handed over in 2013. The official performance test, witnessed by Fichtner, showed the following performance figures:

  • Net power production (compared to guarantee): 104%
  • Specific fuel consumption (compared to guarantee): 88 – 92%
  • Emissions were well below required emission limits.

The Rothes CoRDe was acquired in 2015 by iCON Infrastructure, who concentrates on areas where they have a particular insigth or a competitive advantage.


Regular AET Services and Improvements

Rothes CoRDe and AET have a fruitful and close cooperation

2015 → : Regular inspections

2019: Maintenance of fuel dryer


As a turnkey supplier, AET designed, supplied, constructed and commissioned the following scope:

  • Fuel reception, handling and storage systems for draff and wood chips
  • Draff pressing and drying system
  • Fuel feeding and AET Fuel Dosing System
  • AET Draff Combustion System
  • AET Combustion System with AET Spreader Stoker and AET BioGrate
  • AET Combustion Air System
  • Natural gas burner
  • AET Biomass Boiler with superheaters and economisers
  • AET SNCR DeNOx System
  • AET Steam Air Preheaters
  • Bag filter with lime injection system
  • Flue gas system and stack
  • Ash handling system
  • Steam turbine generator set
  • Condenser and cooling tower
  • Water/steam system
  • Water treatment plant
  • Platforms and stairs
  • Instrumentation
  • PLC control and SCADA system
  • Boiler, turbine and service building
  • Technical Service Agreement (TSA).

Additional Information

  • Two interesting articles have been published about the Helius CorDE Rabobank Ltd. project:
    • Food & Drink Business Europe (AUG/SEP 2013): “Successful start of new biomass fired cogeneration plant”, which provides information about the overall performance and Renewable Obligation Certificate (ROC) in UK: Read more.
    • Bioenergy Insight (SEP/OCT 2013): “Cheers to that!” which explains the fuel handling, AET Combustion System and AET Biomass Boiler: Read more.
  • Official opening Helius CoRDe Biomass plant. On 16th April 2013, HRH, Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay, officially opened the Helius CoRDe 8.3 MWe biomass-fired combined heat and power plant at Rothes, Morayshire in Scotland: Read more.
  • Contract awarded for the construction of the biomass combined heat and power plant at Rothes in Speyside that by 2013 will use the by-products of the whisky-making process for energy production. The Rothes project burns the draff with wood chips to generate enough electricity to supply 9,000 homes: Read more in The Guardian (04.05.2011).
  • “Fuel flexible biomass boilers are the key words in the modern biomass power and CHP plant industry. AET has supplied plants that combust a wide range of biomass, such as agricultural and forest residues, poultry litter, meat and bone meal etc. Draff from the whisky industry is yet another interesting biomass source. Combusting such by-products is the ideal utilisation of biomass for energy production”, says Hans Erik Askou, managing director and one of the founders of AET. (The Bioenergy Site - 31.05.2011): Read more.
  • AET made a presentation at All Energy 2011 and PowerGen 2011 in Milan on the topic: “Efficient Utilisation of Distillery By-products” with the Rothes CoRDe plant as a case study.
  • To obtain more information about this biomass-fired plant and about AET: Contact AET sales.
Boiler: 34 MWth
  80 bara
  450 °C

Electrical power:

≤8,3 MWe

Process energy:  

≤8,0 MWth

The Rothes CoRDe cogeneration plant produces heat and power. 

The plant utilises draff, which is a by-product from whisky production. This comes from 17 different distilleries and is mixed 50/50 with wood chips.

On April 16th 2013, HRH, Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay, officially opened the Rothes CoRDe biomass-fired CHP plant at Rothes, Morayshire, Scotland.

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  • Aalborg Energie Technik a/s
  • Alfred Nobels Vej 21F
  • DK-9220 Aalborg East, Denmark
  • Tel +45 96 32 86 00
  • aet@aet.dk