The charcoal market, especially that of charcoal briquettes, has significantly increased quality requirements from end customers, both in the domestic market and in the countries of Central and Northern Europe where they are exported. Final quality control demands that parameters such as moisture content, volatile matter, ash content, and fixed carbon percentages of the product are met, as well as physical characteristics such as porosity and density. Typically, these analyses take days or weeks to perform and are costly for companies.


In the CARBONIRS project, Boscalia Technologies has been contracted by the company “Carbones La Dehesa,” as an entity interested in providing the highest quality of its products, to investigate an innovative quality control method to replace traditional, slow, and costly methods. To achieve this, CARBONIRS relies on the analysis of charcoal briquettes using Vis-NIR and FTIR spectroscopies. These techniques generate predictive models that can provide values for the physical and chemical parameters of interest almost immediately, economically


The project carried out by Boscalia focused on the analysis of moisture content, ash content, volatile matter, and fixed carbon using NIR and FTIR spectroscopy. These variables are continuous, so regression models were developed: principal component analysis (PCA) and partial least squares regression (PLSR). The best results were obtained with FTIR, with an R2 of 87% for moisture, 88% for ash, and 90% for volatile matter and fixed carbon, confirming the capability of this technology as an optimal method for quality control of charcoal briquettes that can be implemented at the final stage of their production chain.