The main optimization possibilities of a conveyor belt dryer are the product quality, indicated by a preferably homogeneous water content distribution of the drying material, an energy efficient operation mode and of course a high massflow of drying material. In this thesis, the potential as well as the limits of improvement for conveyor belt dryers should be identified. Therefore, a conveyor belt dryer, which is part of an industrial wood pellet production line was investigated. The measured data for the water content distribution in the chipped wood layer at the final stage of the plant has shown a high degree of inhomogeneity. The moisture distribution is the most important parameter to specify the product quality after passing the drying step. To improve the product quality through better homogenisation of the chipped wood layer on the belt, experiments with several types of mixing gadgets were done on a separate testing facility. Compared to the actually installed paddle drum, the best homogenisation results of the material layer were obtained by using a thorn mixing drum. To investigate the possible effects of better mixing and changed process parameters, a physical model, which describes the whole conveyor belt dryer, was developed. To estimate the model validity, the obtained simulation results were compared to corresponding measured values at the same entry conditions. The simulation offers a convenient way to test the influence of different input variables on the system for examining serveral operating points. The obtained simulation results show, that the most economic operating condition can be obtained by maximising the material flow through the drying plant, by increasing all input variables (thickness of the material layer, flow and temperature of the drying air). By increasing the material flow also the energy efficiency of the drying process is rising. However it can be shown, that the inhomogeneity of the material moisture is also increasing for a higher material flow, which leads in this case to a worse product quality after the drying step.