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Biomass energy conversion: conventional and advanced technologies

Abstract

Increasing interest in biomass energy conversion in recent years has focused attention on enhancing the efficiency of technologies converting biomass fuels into heat and power, their capital and operating costs and their environmental emissions. Conventional combustion systems, such as fixed-bed or grate units and entrainment units, deliver lower efficiencies (<25%) than modem coal-fired combustors (30-35%). The gasification of biomass will improve energy conversion efficiency and yield products useful for heat and power generation and chemical synthesis. Advanced biomass gasification technologies using pressurized fluidized-bed systems, including those incorporating hot-gas clean-up for feeding gas turbines or fuel cells, are being demonstrated. However, many biomass gasification processes are derivatives of coal gasification technologies and do not exploit the unique properties of biomass. This paper examines some existing and upcoming technologies for converting biomass into electric power or heat. Small-scale 1-30 MWe units are emphasized, but brief reference is made to larger and smaller systems, including those that bum coal-biomass mixtures and gasifiers that feed pilot-fuelled diesel engines. Promising advanced systems, such as a biomass integrated gasifier/gas turbine (BIG/GT) with combined-cycle operation and a biomass gasifier coupled to a fuel cell, giving cycle efficiencies approaching 50% are also described. These advanced gasifiers, typically fluid-bed  More>>
Authors:
Young, B C; Hauserman, W B [1] 
  1. Energy and Environmental Research Center, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND (United States)
Publication Date:
Dec 01, 1995
Product Type:
Conference
Report Number:
INIS-XT-001; CONF-9512165-
Reference Number:
SCA: 093000; PA: AIX-30:019822; EDB-99:049019; SN: 99002090888
Resource Relation:
Conference: Symposium on development and utilization of biomass energy resources in developing countries, Vienna (Austria), 11-14 Dec 1995; Other Information: DN: 36 refs, 4 figs, 2 tabs; PBD: Dec 1995; Related Information: Is Part Of Symposium on development and utilization of biomass energy resources in developing countries. Proceedings. V. 1: Thematic papers; PB: 364 p.
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; BIOMASS; CAPITALIZED COST; COMBUSTION; DEVELOPING COUNTRIES; ENERGY CONVERSION; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS; FLUIDIZED-BED COMBUSTION; GASIFICATION; GREENHOUSE GASES; OPERATING COST
OSTI ID:
340400
Research Organizations:
United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Vienna (Austria)
Country of Origin:
UNIDO
Language:
English
Other Identifying Numbers:
Other: ON: DE99621757; TRN: XT9900015019822
Availability:
INIS; OSTI as DE99621757
Submitting Site:
INIS
Size:
pp. 135-153
Announcement Date:

Citation Formats

Young, B C, and Hauserman, W B. Biomass energy conversion: conventional and advanced technologies. UNIDO: N. p., 1995. Web.
Young, B C, & Hauserman, W B. Biomass energy conversion: conventional and advanced technologies. UNIDO.
Young, B C, and Hauserman, W B. 1995. "Biomass energy conversion: conventional and advanced technologies." UNIDO.
@misc{etde_340400,
title = {Biomass energy conversion: conventional and advanced technologies}
author = {Young, B C, and Hauserman, W B}
abstractNote = {Increasing interest in biomass energy conversion in recent years has focused attention on enhancing the efficiency of technologies converting biomass fuels into heat and power, their capital and operating costs and their environmental emissions. Conventional combustion systems, such as fixed-bed or grate units and entrainment units, deliver lower efficiencies (<25%) than modem coal-fired combustors (30-35%). The gasification of biomass will improve energy conversion efficiency and yield products useful for heat and power generation and chemical synthesis. Advanced biomass gasification technologies using pressurized fluidized-bed systems, including those incorporating hot-gas clean-up for feeding gas turbines or fuel cells, are being demonstrated. However, many biomass gasification processes are derivatives of coal gasification technologies and do not exploit the unique properties of biomass. This paper examines some existing and upcoming technologies for converting biomass into electric power or heat. Small-scale 1-30 MWe units are emphasized, but brief reference is made to larger and smaller systems, including those that bum coal-biomass mixtures and gasifiers that feed pilot-fuelled diesel engines. Promising advanced systems, such as a biomass integrated gasifier/gas turbine (BIG/GT) with combined-cycle operation and a biomass gasifier coupled to a fuel cell, giving cycle efficiencies approaching 50% are also described. These advanced gasifiers, typically fluid-bed designs, may be pressurized and can use a wide variety of biomass materials to generate electricity, process steam and chemical products such as methanol. Low-cost, disposable catalysts are becoming available for hot-gas clean-up (enhanced gas composition) for turbine and fuel cell systems. The advantages, limitations and relative costs of various biomass gasifier systems are briefly discussed. The paper identifies the best known biomass power projects and includes some information on proposed and planned projects worldwide. The main incentives, such as greenhouse gas reduction, the expanded use of various biomass sources and improved efficiency, are often insufficient to overcome barriers to the development and commercialization of advanced conversion systems and even to the introduction of conventional biomass-fired combustors for heat and power. Site characteristics, handling and transport costs and the availability and reliability of fuel feedstocks are major considerations in selecting system designs. In transferring biomass conversion technology to developing countries, these factors and others, such as sufficient data on the composition of the indigenous biomass, economics and training, are important. Successful transfer, however, will depend on a facilitator from the developing country and a technology champion from the developed country. (author) 36 refs, 4 figs, 2 tabs}
place = {UNIDO}
year = {1995}
month = {Dec}
}