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Title: Determining the biomass fraction of mixed waste fuels: A comparison of existing industry and {sup 14}C-based methodologies

Highlights: • Compares industry standard and {sup 14}C methods for determining bioenergy content of MSW. • Differences quantified through study at an operational energy from waste plant. • Manual sort and selective dissolution are unreliable measures of feedstock bioenergy. • {sup 14}C methods (esp. AMS) improve precision and reliability of bioenergy determination. • Implications for electricity generators and regulators for award of bio-incentives. - Abstract: {sup 14}C analysis of flue gas by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) and liquid scintillation counting (LSC) were used to determine the biomass fraction of mixed waste at an operational energy-from-waste (EfW) plant. Results were converted to bioenergy (% total) using mathematical algorithms and assessed against existing industry methodologies which involve manual sorting and selective dissolution (SD) of feedstock. Simultaneous determinations using flue gas showed excellent agreement: 44.8 ± 2.7% for AMS and 44.6 ± 12.3% for LSC. Comparable bioenergy results were obtained using a feedstock manual sort procedure (41.4%), whilst a procedure based on selective dissolution of representative waste material is reported as 75.5% (no errors quoted). {sup 14}C techniques present significant advantages in data acquisition, precision and reliability for both electricity generator and industry regulator.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ; ; ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [2]
  1. SUERC Radiocarbon Laboratory, Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre (SUERC), Rankine Avenue, East Kilbride G75 0QF, Scotland (United Kingdom)
  2. Stopford Energy and Environment, The Gordon Manley Building, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YQ, England (United Kingdom)
  3. NERC Radiocarbon Facility, Scottish Enterprise Technology Park, Rankine Avenue, East Kilbride G75 0QF, Scotland (United Kingdom)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22443616
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Waste Management; Journal Volume: 35; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2014 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; ACCURACY; ALGORITHMS; BIOMASS; CARBON 14; DATA ACQUISITION; DISSOLUTION; ELECTRICITY; FLUE GAS; INDUSTRY; MASS SPECTROSCOPY; POWER GENERATION; RELIABILITY; SCINTILLATION COUNTING; SORTING; WASTE PROCESSING PLANTS