A video from the building phase could be seen here.
The biogas installation in the province of Aveyron, France is continuously progressing. The concrete digesters have been erected within time and budget, despite the bad weather conditions.
After setting up the concrete fermenters and performing several quality checks, we started to install all the pipes and cables. Due to the situation on site, all the installations had to be made within a very narrow space frame.
At the end of July we started to install roofs and engines, as well as the innovative low-pressure dryer for final substrates.
A video of the installation can be seen, by clicking on the upper picture.
High ranking participants from seven countries have been taking part at the international Sommer School at the University of Rottenburg.
During a first class practical program the 27 participants learned both theory and practice about qualified solutions in the Energy Country Germany.
During the presentational speech of Thomas Helle, Director of Novis GmbH Group, they learned about do's and dont's in energy plant erection in Africa, Asia and South America.
They showed high interest in special solutions e.g. digestion of cocoa seeds or rice husk digestion.
A group of high potentials from Asia visited Novis headquarter in September 2013 the potentials of Novis to make more money out of waste biomass, especially by the biogas process was impressing the visitors from Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines.
Special attention was payed to the processes which could easily be adapted to each of the special input subtrates of the countries.
With a standardized process it is possible to produce the best biogas results and to generate high profitability. This is necessarily demanding special designed but nevertheless cheap installations.
Novis has proven their concepts of biogas for cocoa, POME, EFB, rise husk, wheat straw, fruits and many all sorts of municipal solid organic waste streams.
The German Commercial and Industrial Chamber in Reutlingen has opened the discussion on the 'Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership' (TTIP) between the EU and the USA. Novis' CEO Thomas Helle was asked for his opinion.
You can read the whole article HERE, unfortunately only in German.
At the end of July 2014 a radio interview on station SWR4 was broadcasted with Thomas Helle in preparation for the business forum at the Afrikafestival in Tübingen.
The interview was held by Sandra Mueller, Suedwestrundfunk (SWR).
At the 25th of September in 2014 the third congress of resource efficiency of the national government in Baden-Württemberg (Ressourceneffizienz- und Wirtschaftskreislaufkongress Baden-Württemberg) was held. Novis' CEO Dr. Thomas Helle was invited by „BIOPRO Baden-Württemberg“.
The main focus was on the projects of Novis in the field of bio-economy. In particular the project about gaining heavy metals and rare earths from slag and the innovative approach to gain valuables from the residues of the cocoa production. The principal theme of both projects is the usage of bacteria for materials processing.
The congress was moderated by Dr. Kindervater head of „BIOPRO Baden-Württemberg“ (BIOPRO BaWü GmbH). Prof. Lewandowsky from the University of Hohenheim presented the strategies of the national government on bio-economy as well as the new founded Masters for bio-economies. Dr. Schließmann introduced the many activities of the „Fraunhofer-Institut“ in this subject. Dr. Thomas Helle showed of the practical experience Novis has in this field by demonstrating the latest implementation projects.
These days the first biogas plant of Novis started in the south of France.
Please click here to have a closer look at the video of the construction site.
Novis is partnering on all fields of biodigestion with Arkolia sarl. Arikolia is a market leader in photovoltaics and also within the development of biogas plants.
The digested material for this biogas plant is sheep manure. After long research in the lab, special additives had been developed to guarantee a satisfying result of the digestion process of this special material which contains high amounts of straw.
Panel discussion with Federal Minister Niebel (2013)
On the 11th of July in 2013 a panel discussion takes place in the parliament of Baden-Wuerttemberg. On the topic:
Chances for development countries and companies of Baden-Wuerttemberg
The panel is staffed with: Federal Minister of development Dirk Niebel, Dr. Epp (IHK), Dr. Thomas Helle, Novis GmbH and Prof. Werner Mühlbauer (University of Hohenheim).
Please click here to download the programm and invitation:
More market economy in the development aid
Energy as engine of innovation in the development aid
In the framework of the circle of friends Walter Scheel e.V., senior development agents of the development aid have had a meeting in the BMZ (Ministry of developpment) in Bonn. Their topic: More market economy in the development aid.
Federal Minister Dirk Niebel expressed oneself on the topic of: "Innovation and technollogy transfer as a chance for development countries". Novis GmbH, represented by Thomas Helle, was honoured for delivering a part on biomass as source of energy especially for african development countries. The booklet was published in Mai 2013.
Clic to download: Mehr Marktwirtschaft in der Entwicklungspolitik (Sorry fiends: this is only available in German language).
Novis took part at the panel discussion at the first West African Clean Energy & Environment Exhibition & Conference - WACEE '12.
Main topic of this panel discussion was Perspectives for Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency in West Africa.
Questions like why are renewable energies and their efficient usage so crucrial for West Africa? Which economic, environmental and social perspectives do they offer ? were discussed by a group of experts including Dr. Thomas Helle.
Novis GmbH wins the GlobalConnect Award in the category "newcomer" at the Global Connect Trade Fare. GlobalConnect is the most important forum for export and internationalization in Germany. Novis is thereby honored for its engagement in foreign trade and its innovative ideas on entering new markets. Since 2002, Novis designs and realizes biogas projects in Asia, Africa and Europe. "The African , and especially also the Asian market, holds enormous potential for our company. In addition, this work is a lot of fun!" , says CEO Dr. Thomas Helleabout his motivation for specializing on the international market.
The award comes with 2.500€ prize money and is conferred by Dr. Nils Schmidt, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Economy of Baden-Wuerttemberg. Dr. Schmid was delighted about Novis work in the international markets .
The project "Stadtwerke schaffen Dorfwerke" , won the "Innovation Award Public Private Partnership 2012". On the 16th October 2012, Detlev Höhne, member of the board of directors of Stadtwerke Mainz (SWM), received the prize clearly delighted. Financed by SWM and DEG, Novis could realize this project Kalom, Senegal. The special award honors the extraordianrily successful realization of the project. It impressed in particular with a clearly visible benefit for the people in Kalom. Manuela Marques (DEG) and Ricarda Horst (DEG) are pleased about the award for a, in their view, ideally realized project. Milena Huhnen-Venedey, the project manager in charge, thanks everyone involved for the extraordinary cooperation in this prime example of rural electrification: "This way, it is possible to make an important impact on a small budget."
German Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development Dirk Niebel met a number of selected companies for a business discussion including Novis GmbH with its director Dr. Thomas Helle. "I am a fan of biomass!" Minister Niebel thus honored the core competences of Novis as an important contribution to the economic cooperation. The minister was very well prepared and highly open about cooperating with the private sector. With priority, he advocates for the restructuring of the giz towards a business-friendly organisation. Thomas Helle thanked him on behalf of many entrepreneurs who are economically involved in developing countries.
HE Hon. Minister for Renewable Energies Aly Ngouille NDIAYE visited on the 20th of July the new rural electrification installation of Kalom-Mainz-Industries (KMI) SARL in Kalom, Senegal ( in the midst, with military entourage; left: CEO of KMI Babacar Faye).
After having inspected the whole installation with a very high interest her showed himself impressed. The Novis innovation - the Small Industrial Zone - which combines electricity generation with sustainable economical development by generating local added value - was in his eyes a key factor for the development of rural areas.
The installation of KMI in Kalom, Senegal was financed by the Stadtwerke Mainz together with Germanies DEG in the PPP framework.
Fotocredit: Simone Gilges
On the 16th October 2012, the new 32 kW pyrolysis plant in Kalom, Senegal, was inaugurated after two years' preparation and realization work. The plant, a project of "Stadtwerke schaffen Dorfwerke", is co-financed by Stadtwerke Mainz and DEG as a PPP program and realized by Novis GmbH. The power plant supplies 1.200 people with clean electricity produced by incinerating peanut shells. Additionally, the new plant also supplies a mini industrial zone with clean energy which has been designed to bring added value to the people.
Detlev Höhne (member of the board of Stadtwerke Mainz) and representatives of the DEG celebrated now successful cmpletion of the project together with the senator of the region Woula NDIAYE and other representatives of the Senegalese government, as well as the German ambassador Christian Clages and Doudou SAGNA (CEO of Novis Senegal S.A.R.L.).
Novis GmbH welcomes the new partner Arkolia sarl (located in the south of France). The 15 participants of the third Arkolia visit in Germany have had the chance to visit some biogas installations in the south of Germany.
After haveing researched in detail the innovative multi stage biogasplant the visitors from France were stoked
25th of May 2012 Novis was present at a fair in the German Development Ministry (BMZ) in Bonn.
Secretary of state Gudrun Kopp (left side, in discussion with the member of Novis team Milena Huhnen-Venedey) was impressed by the innovative approaches of Novis in Western Africa.
She was commited to provide active support for the upcoming financial discussion rounds on behalf of new projects.
The 19th of April 2012 Novis member Katherina Helle meets Germanys (1st to the left) new Federal President Joachim Gauck (mid of picture) for a short conversation about freedom.
Energy related questions so far have not - yet - been discussed at this meeting.
On a public discussion round, held on may 5th 2012, Thomas Helle Novis could present the entrepreneurial role in development aid. The discussion was co-organized by Oikocredit Germany.
Dresden. The Wipro GmbH arranges a workshop on renewable energy and market entry planning in Africa on 15 November 2011. The workshop is part of "Africa Week 2011" and takes place in the Centrum-Galerie Dresden under the title "The increase of energy needs in the context of change in Africa".
The CEO of the Novis GmbH, Dr. Thomas Helle, will also participate in this energy workshop. Dr. Helle will report on biomass-to-power solutions in connection with lucrative investment opportunities and market energy strategies. There will be a discussion how German companies can benefit from it.
Senior officials and ambassadors of African countries will also participate, they will inform about the current situation in their countries.
Click here for more information about the seventh "Africa Week" and the program for the energy workshop.
Stuttgart. The Chamber of Industry and Commerce of the Stuttgart region presented on 14 October 2011 the "AfriKa-Roadshow", showing business opportunities for German companies in Africa. Felix Baumann, Novis project leader of biogas projects, presented two bioenergy projects in West Africa to show the opportunities, problems and risks of working in Africa.
The "Afrika-Roadshow" took place at many cities in Germany, organized by the German Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber of Foreign Trade. The heads of the Chamber of Foreign Trade offices in Angola, Ghana and Nigeria were in Stuttgart and reported examples of the current situation in each country. In addition, representatives of DEG - German Investment and Development Bank , IBN Consulting & Immigration and Gnofame Partnership Managment particitpated in the discussion. They answered questions on financing, intercultural issues, market entry and development.
The speakers and participants agreed that the financing and the risk of political and economic instability were the biggest hurdles for German investment in Africa. Novis GmbH showed by means of two projects in Senegal how even relatively small companies can successfully be engaged in Africa.
On the 12th of November 2011 the professional fair "Engagement Weltweit" (Commitment to one world) took place in Bonn. Novis exhibited for the second time at the fair. The concepts and projects for production of renewable energy based on biomass created a lot of attention.
At this fair over 60 implementing organisations of government Development Cooperation (DC), multilateral institutions and non-government organisations (NGOs) were present with information stands. As the only private sector company specialised on energy production Novis was looking for technicians and project managers for the realization of their projects in West Africa. Personal conversation enabled the visitors to receive more information about the projects and the employment possibilities.
The fair "Engagement Weltweit" is Germany's only in the sector and it targets specifically professionals with interests in working in the field of international development. Novis is looking forward to participating again at the fair in the future to share its experiences and get in contact with applicants.
From 5th - 7th June 2011 the 14th International Business Forum "Investment Climate for Climate Investment - fostering business dynamics for inclusive low-carbon growth" was held in Berlin. The event was organised by GIZ in collaboration with KfW, the World Bank Institute and Econsense. The event aimed at improving the financing of renewable energy projects, especially in developing countries and for the poorest people at the base of the pyramid.
At the conference Novis GmbH introduced innovative business models for the production of energy from biomass. At the podium discussion about different stakeholder perspectives the Chief Executive Officer of Novis, Dr. Thomas Helle, represented the perspectives of the entrepreneurs from the north.
His comments about the possibilities for new income on a local level in developing countries through the use of waste biomass for electricity production created strong interest. Especially in rural regions a sustanaible electrification can be achieved by the use of pyrolysis and biogas plants in combination with micro grids. "The acess to electricity is economically possible for everyone, also for the people at the base of pyramid" Dr. Helle is convinced.
In the following working groups and plenary discussions the chances and risks of realising climate investments were discussed. Especially the involvementof the private sector was seen as the key for a faster development.
In the opinion of Novis the following points have to be achieved for a stronger engagement of private companies:
Novis GmbH and our partners are planning on upscaling the number and size of our own renewable energy projects in developing countries. The acess to electricity is a necessary precondition for sustanaible development for the people living at the base of the pyramid and has to be increased as quickly as possible. The necessary technologies, concepts, business models and realisation experiences are ready and available. We are looking forward to discuss cooperations with interested project and financing partners.
Novis - Electricity from biomass - unique in Dakar!
From 27th April to 30th April 2011 Novis participated in the fourth "Exhibition of Renewable Energy and Environment in Afrika" held in Dakar, Senegal. The regional fair with participants from all West Africa displayed a wide range of technlogies for the production and utilization of renewable energy. Novis participated for the second time, as the only participant offering technologies for the use of biological wastes.
Numerous visitors came to see the booth of Novis at the exhibition - the innovative technologies to produce electricity based on local biomass created high interest. Novis offers in Senegal fermentation plants for electricity production from humid biomass and pyrolysis plants to produce electricity from woody biomass. Both technologies produce biogas out of the input biomass which later fuels generators to produce electricity. The technologies enable the use of local biomass, which would otherwise be left to rot as waste, to reliably produce electricity at all hours of the day. Additionally, electricity from biomass is considerably (!) cheaper than electricity produced from Diesel generators. With Novis technologies local jobs are created and the value added remains in the countries.
The promotion of renewable energy is also an important matter for the Senegalese Government being the host country of the exhibition. President Abdoulaye Wade and his Ministers visited the exhibition on the second day of the fair to further promote and support the production of renewable energy in Senegal.
During his tour of the exhibition President Wade talked to the most interesting exhibitors. The longest conservation was held at the exhibition booth of Novis. The pictures of the first large installations in Senegal drew the attention of the president. The president and the head of Novis Senegal Mr. Doudou Sagna discussed the first large projects installed in Senegal as well as the potentials for biomass electricity production in Senegal (1.500 MW) and possible creation of jobs in the sector (up to 100.000 jobs). Especially the possibility to utilise wastes from agricultural production to generate electricity was one of the most promising ideas for the extension of renewable energy production from local resources in Senegal for the president. "Electricity generation from biomass is an important technology for Senegal" he noted at his departure from the Novis booth.
Novis herewith wants to thank president Wade for his support of the production of renewable energy and promises to further dedicate its resources to the development of renewable energy production fro local biomass in Senegal.
Novis GmbH has moved. The new headquarters are located in the technology centre "Vor dem Kreuzberg" in Tübingen. Importnat enterprises such as IMMATICS und MEDIGENE also orginate from this technology centre. The new postal addres of Novis GmbH is:
Vor dem Kreuzberg 17
Strategic partnership with the MÖWIC AG
We welcome the MÖWIC AG as a strategic partner in our network. The MÖWIC AG having their domicile in Switzerland does international consulting services in media, environment and economy.
The cooperation aims primary at using the energetic potential of municipal solid waste in Turkey.
The general representative of Novis in Turkey is Dipl. Ing. Muammer Zeki Alpay.
Dpl. Ing. Muammer Zeki Alpay
Zürich / Istanbul
TEL: +90 533 616 7989 or +41 44 450 8803
EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Since October 2010 the first pyrolysis installation of Senegal is in operation in the community in Rosso. Novis GmbH built and started a 70 kilowatt installation for the company Coumba Nor Thiam. Waste rice hulls from rice production are used as fuel for the plant.
The installation is run by local technicians that were trained by Novis in the operation of the plant. A total of 5 new jobs are created in the maintenance and operation of the installation. Through the use of production wastes the company Coumba Nor Thiam saves the diesel fuel for the generator that was used before and avoid the expansive prices of the local energy provider.
And the project in Rosso will not remain the last one. Together with Coumba Nor Thiam and partially financed by PSI from the Netherlands Novis has already started realizing the next pyrolysis project in Senegal. This time a reactor for the operation of a 500 kilowatt generator will be built. In this project, additionally to rice hulls typha briquettes will be used as a fuel.
The energy production with the pyrolysis technology offers many advantages for Senegal. Especially in agricultural production companies many diesel generators could be replaced by pyrolysis plants in the next years. As a result the energy production becomes more environmentally friendly and the sime time the operators save the expansive costs for the purchase of the diesel fuel.
Click here for more information about pyrolysis.
Since the beginning of February 2011 the first Novis biogas installation for the digestion of waste from the production processes of raw cocoa.
In the installation all data from the digestion process of the cocoa wastes are measured. This includes for the examples the evaluation of the portion of solid particles of the used substrates and their biogas yields. With the gained knowledge the planning of larger biogas installations running on cocoa wastes will be made possible.
The production of energy from biogas offers great potentials for Ivory Coast, if the wastes fro domestic products can be utilized. Cocoa is one of the biggest cultivated agricultural products in Ivory Coast. To make the production wastes accessible for utilization is a key for production of biogas and bio energy in the country. The Novis pilot installation now opens the door for that.
Note: Ivory Coast is world's leading cocoa producer. But many cocoa plantations in the country are old and need renewal. Liquid fertilizer from biogas plants is proven to help improving production yields is an environmentally sustainable way.
Click here for more information about digestion in biogas plants.
Pyrolysis technology produces electricity from biomass
Gohomey/Rottenburg: At the beginning of February a delegation of 40 members of the ministry of energy and industry, the agency for rural electrification, as well as the national water and energy supply agency have visited the pyrolysis installation of the hospital AHP in Gohomey. The plant is the first of its kind in Benin and was planed and installed by Novis.
"We are very pleased about this installation of a new technology for Benin" stated the Minister of Energy Saka Lafia. "Pyrolysis of biomass offers Benin totally new possibilities for the production of sustanaible energy from domestic resources". The chief of the region Djakotome is convinced of the demonstrating effect of the project. "Installations as this pyrolysis plant here in Gohomey could create the same positive results in another 100 locations in the region".
With the Novis installation it is possible to produce electricity based on locally available biomass. Instead of expensive diesel imports domestic biomass is used. By selling their harvest residua to the power plant the farmers receive a new source of income. As a result, an agricultural value added is created a well.
Accordingly, the interest of the Ministry of Energy in the technology is high. During the two hour visit of the installation Abel Kidjo, Novis representative in Benin, answers numerous questions of the delegation and the television crew that accompanied the visit. Further talks with follow. The government of Benin is now considering including the energy production from biomass in pyrolysis plant in government assisted programs. "Novis is deeply convinced to be able to provide an important contribution to the sustanaible energy supply of the Benin" says Kidjo. "The pyrolysis technology offers great possibilities for Benin. Now it will be essential to realise these potentials together with the government and the private sector".
In developing countries energy is a precious, mostly unaffordable comodity. Or it is produced at the expense of the environment with long-lasting negative ecological effects. But there are possibilities for change.
In order to offer a sustanaible development to rural communities in Africa, Novis together with its partners have developed a village electrification concept based on biomass. For manageable costs an entire village can be supplied with electricity - households as well as small businesses!
The inital situation oftenlooks like this:
In rural areas of developing countries most people live from subsistence economy. Agriculture gives often only a small income. The cultivated crops from the fields nourish the family. Because of low soil fertility, surpluses in production are hardly ever generated. Financing of health care and education is extremely difficult for the families. All of the agriculture residues are burnt or left to rot without being used.
A sustainable concept ideally would improve the agricultural production chain and at the same time create an additional value.
What is the concept of Novis?
The concept is centred on the use of formerlery unused local biomass. This biomass is mailny agricultural waste as for example peanut shells. The organic materials are collected and used for the generation of electricity. Depending on the type of available biomass two different technologies are used to provide electricity from biomass. In a pyrolysis reactor dry and woody biomass is partially burnt and transformed into a producer gas. Wet biomass with low wooden content is fermented in a biogas plant.
The utilization of biomass offers many advantages.
Since the electricity is paid by the local customers, the production of energy is not depending on continous subsidies from development agencies or the government. On the contrary the projects achieve sustanaibility on their own.
Assistance is only needed during the initial installation of the power plant and the micro grid.
The entire energy production is integrated in the agricultural production cycle. The residues from the energy production in pyrolysis plants are wooden charcoal which enhances soil fertility. The biogas plant delivers a digestat which is a highly efficient fertilizer. Both residues have a positive effect on crop yields. This in turn can improve the nutrition of the villagers.
The technologies are simple to use and environmentally friendly. The amount of CO2 being released has been captured by the plants beforehand.
Looking at the development perspective, the availability of energy has various positive effects on the livelihood of the village community. Reading and learning after dusk is possible as well as the cooling of foods and medication. It also opens the possibility to run processing machines for the agricultural products, which further improves the agricultural value added.
Village electrification based on sustanaible energy production is a key element to promote development in developing countries. It offers the possibility to improve the life of the village people in an environmentally friendly way. Novis identifies suitable locations for village electrification. Additionally Novis conducts the project managment, supplies the technical know-how and a wide network of international specialists and local experts in West Africa. For our projects we are looking for interested inventors or dedicated partner organisations. If you would like to know more about our concept of village electrification we are looking forward to your inquiry.
At the beginning of October two Novis installations have reached their destination in Benin in West Africa.
In the future they will provide a hospital and irrigation pumps of the local farmers with energy from biomass - reliable, economical and environment-friendly. The new small power plants will substitute the expensive diesel generators that were in use to meet the energy demand so far. The 32 kW installation of the hospital can produce 200.000 kWh and will help to improve the medicial care for more than 15.000 patients in one year. a reliable supply with electricity creates many advantages for the hospital: improved hygiene through cooling of food an medicines, air conditioning, learning and working after dusk as well as the use of electrical (medical) appliances.
The Novis-Team in the Benin has planned the project and is now taking care of the installation and the start-up of the two plants.