Generating green power from Colombian rice husk

Viking Heat Engines has teamed up with SuperBrix, a leading manufacturer of milling and grain-processing solutions in Barranquilla, Colombia, to transform waste from local rice production into affordable, clean electricity and heat.

From biomass waste to electricity

Every year, the world’s rice producers create millions of tonnes of waste in the form of husk. The rice husk is the outer layer of the grain, which is removed during the milling process. Colombia alone produces 340,000 metric tons* of husk annually, which often has an adverse environmental impact since much of it is either burned or simply dumped.

By combining forces, SuperBrix and Viking Heat Engines are to enable rice farmers to burn the husk they produce in an environmentally friendly way, and create electricity and heat in the process.

Read about the successful startup of TEOPOWER in Colombia.

Dirk Nuber, CEO of Viking Heat Engines Caribbean, says the electricity, and especially the heat produced by such an installation, are vital to the production of rice on farms.

"The solution that SuperBrix has provided up until now is called the TEO furnace, and this has been especially developed to dry the rice,” he says. "We’ll take a portion of the heat that these ‘dryers’ produce and transform the energy into electricity using our CraftEngine technology. The CraftEngine will power the farm’s facilities and our own installation, eliminating the need to run expensive diesel generators.”

A perfect match

Dirk came across SuperBrix during a visit to a rice farm in Guyana. Founded in 1960, SuperBrix has gained recognition as a very innovative company. "I found the TEO furnace at the farm, and thought it was pretty sophisticated,” he says. "It was burning rice husk and producing heat, and I thought, ‘That’s all we need. We need heat!’ ”

A few days later, contact was made with SuperBrix in Colombia. "They had been trying to find a partner that could produce power, but all the technologies they had come across were either too expensive or too large in scale,” he says. "When they saw what we had to offer, they invited us to come along right away.”

A fantastic opportunity ahead

Very little R&D will be needed to combine the TEO furnace with the CraftEngine, and the partners plan to have the new solution up and running by June this year. Together they will roll out this technology in Colombia, as well as the 14 other countries that SuperBrix currently serves.

"This solution will not only benefit farmers in off-grid or rural areas,” Nuber says. "It will also support industrial rice producers. I think we have a fantastic opportunity ahead of us. If these are the things we can do with rice, just imagine what we can do with other natural resources. It is through our focus on developing partnerships like this that we at Viking Heat Engines plan to penetrate new and exciting growth markets.”


  • expensive power production from diesel generators due to high fuel and transport costs, and even losses due to theft

The future:

  • cost savings through the elimination of diesel consumption
  • provision of affordable power from rice husk
  • removal of costs relating to disposal of rice husk waste
  • use of rice husk ash as fertilizer, reducing use of other non-environmentally sound fertilizers
  • reduction of environmental footprint through elimination of diesel consumption and rice husk burning or dumping

Visit our TEOPOWER page to learn more.

*U. S. D. o. Agriculture, “IndexMundi,” 2016. [Online]. Available:

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