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Biomass & Bio-fuel

Analysis as an alternate source of energy

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What is Biomass?
Simply defined, biomass is all plant material, or
vegetation, either raw or processed, wild or
cultivated.
– Essentially, biomass is stored solar energy that man
can convert to electricity, fuel, and heat.
– Through photosynthesis the energy from the sun is
stored in the chemical bonds of the plant material.

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History of Biomass

Prior to the industrial revolution, biomass satisfied nearly all of


man's energy demands. Up until the 1860s, the World used
biomass, in the form of wood, for nearly 91% of all energy
consumption. In 1992 biomass generated $1.8 billion in
personal and corporate income and employed 66,000
workers. Although presently the majority of humankind's
energy requirements are fulfilled by fossil fuel combustion,
14% of the world still utilizes biomass.

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Biomass-Energy Cycle

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Biomass Resources

• Energy Crops
– Woody crops
– Agricultural crops
• Waste Products
– Wood residues
– Temperate crop wastes
– Tropical crop wastes
– Animal wastes
– Municipal Solid Waste (MSW)
– Commercial and industrial wastes 6
Corn

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Soybeans

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Sorghum

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Sugar Cane Bagasse

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Switchgrass

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Hybrid Poplar

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Corn Stover

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Wood Chips & Sawdust

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http://www.energytrust.org/RR/bio/
Tracy Biomass Plant

Truck unloading wood chips that will fuel


the Tracy Biomass Plant, Tracy, California. 15
Municipal Solid Waste

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Why we need
Biomass?

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We need it because…

• Recently many scientist came up with some


most shocking results. Which are;
– The earth will run out of natural gas up to 2020.
– Up to 2025 there would be almost not enough
crude oil to power our industries.
– Dramatically increasing cost of natural fuels.
– Shortage of our natural resources.

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Benefits of Biomass

There are countless benefits to biomass use


economically, environmentally, and
nationally. They include:

• Economic Benefits $$$$.

• Environmental Benefits.

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Economic Benefits $$$
$
• Rural economic development and
stability:
– we spend billions each year
importing oil, biomass could replace
half of this and direct it to our
economy not to foreign oil markets.

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Environmental
Benefits.
• Sustainable agricultural techniques for these
crops can restore and ensure soil stability and
health along with minimizing chemical residues
and habitat destruction.
• Methane is 20 times more potent than CO2.
Capturing methane from producers such as cows
or rice fields and applying it for fuel will
significantly reduce this greenhouse gas.
• No net increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide.

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Creating Energy
from Biomass

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Bioenergy Conversion

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Biomass Direct
Combustion

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Heat Energy Content

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Municipal Solid Waste
Power Plant

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Composition of MSW

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Integrated Waste Plant

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Landfill Gasses

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Biorefinery

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http://www.nrel.gov/biomass/biorefinery.html
Sugar Platform
1. Convert biomass to sugar or other
fermentation feedstock
2. Ferment biomass intermediates using
biocatalysts
• Microorganisms including yeast and
bacteria;
1. Process fermentation product
• Yield fuel-grade ethanol and other fuels,
chemicals, heat and/or electricity

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http://www.nrel.gov/biomass/proj_biochemical_conversion.html
Thermochemical
Platform

• Direct Combustion
• Gasification
• Pyrolysis

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Gasification

• Biomass heated with no oxygen


• Gasifies to mixture of CO and H2
– Called “Syngas” for synthetic gas
• Mixes easily with oxygen
• Burned in turbines to generate electricity
– Like natural gas
• Can easily be converted to other fuels,
chemicals, and valuable materials
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Biomass Gasifier
• 200 tons of wood
chips daily
• Forest thinnings;
wood pallets
• Converted to gas at
~1850 ºF
• Combined cycle gas
turbine
• 8MW power output McNeil Generating Station
biomass gasifier – 8MW

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Pyrolysis

• Heat bio-material under pressure


– 500-1300 ºC (900-2400 ºF)
– 50-150 atmospheres
– Carefully controlled air supply
• Up to 75% of biomass converted to liquid
• Tested for use in engines, turbines, boilers
• Currently experimental

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http://www1.eere.energy.gov/biomass/pyrolysis.html
Pyrolysis Schmatic

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http://www1.eere.energy.gov/biomass/pyrolysis.html
Anaerobic Digestion

• Decompose biomass with


microorganisms
– Closed tanks known as anaerobic digesters
– Produces methane (natural gas) and CO2
• Methane-rich biogas can be used as fuel
or as a base chemical for biobased
products.
• Used in animal feedlots, and elsewhere

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http://www1.eere.energy.gov/biomass/other_platforms.html
Carbon Rich Platform
• Natural plant oils such as soybean, corn, palm,
and canola oils
– In wide use today for food and chemical applications
• Transesterification of vegetable oil or animal fat
produces fatty acid methyl ester
– Commonly known as biodiesel.
• Biodiesel an important commercial air-emission
reducing additive / substitute for diesel fuel
– could be platform chemical for biorefineries.

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http://www1.eere.energy.gov/biomass/other_platforms.html
Bio-Fuels

There are three kinds of Bio-fuels

• Ethanol
• BioDiesel
• SynGas
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Ethanol

–Created by fermentation of
starches/sugars
–US capacity of 1.8 billion
gals/yr (2005)
–Active research on cellulosic
fermentation

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http://www.eere.energy.gov/RE/bio_fuels.html
Biodiesel

–Organic oils combined


with alcohols
–Creates ethyl or methyl
esters

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Biodiesel Bus

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http://www.nrel.gov/biomass/photos.html
SynGas Biofuels

Syngas (H2 & CO)


converted to methanol, or
liquid fuel similar to diesel

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Environmental
Impacts

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Environmental Issues
• Air Quality
– Reduce NOx and SO2 emissions
• Global Climate Change
– Low/no net increase in CO2
• Soil Conservation
– Soil erosion control, nutrient retention, carbon
sequestration, and stabilization of riverbanks.
• Water Conservation
– Better retention of water in watersheds
• Biodiversity and Habitat
– Positive and negative changes 47

http://www.eere.energy.gov/RE/bio_integrated.html
Heat and CO2 Content

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Net Life Cycle Emissions

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Boyle, Renewable Energy, Oxford University Press (2004)


Crop Erosion Rates

SRWC = Short Rotation Woody Crops

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Michael Totten, Conservation International, January 27, 2006


Biocide Requirements

Short Rotation
Woody Crops 51

Michael Totten, Conservation International, January 27, 2006


Promise of
Bioenergy

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Biomass Infrastructure

• Biomass Production Improvements


– Genetics, breeding, remote sensing, GIS,
analytic and evaluation techniques
• Biomass Material Handling
– Storage, handling, conveying, size reduction,
cleaning, drying, feeding systems, systems
• Biomass Logistics and Infrastructure
– Harvesting, collecting, storing, transporting,
other biomass supply chain elements
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http://www.eere.energy.gov/RE/bio_resources.html
Benefits of Bioenergy
Multiple benefits would accrue:
• Rural American farmers
producing these fuel crops
would see $5 billion of
increased profits per year.
• Consumers would see future
pump savings of $20 billion
per year on fuel costs.
• Society would see CO2
emissions reduced by 6.2
billion tons per year, equal to
80% of U.S. transportation-
related CO2 emissions in
2002.

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www.bioproducts-bioenergy.gov/pdfs/NRDC-Growing-
BioPower Electricity

• Direct Combustion
– Burn biomass to create steam
• Co-Firing
– Mix biomass with coal in coal plants
– Economically attractive
• Gasification
• Pyrolysis
• Anaerobic Digestion
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http://www.eere.energy.gov/RE/bio_biopower.html
Thanks!
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