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System studies of forest-based biomass gasification
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Energy Systems. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Bioenergy will play an important role in reaching the EU targets for renewable energy. Sweden, with abundant forest resources and a well-established forest industry, has a key position regarding modern biomass use. Biomass gasification (BMG) offers several advantages compared to biomass combustion-based processes, the most prominent being the possibility for downstream conversion to motor fuels (biofuels), and the potential for higher electrical efficiency if used for electricity generation in a biomass integrated gasification combined cycle (BIGCC). BMG-based processes in general have a considerable surplus of heat, which facilitates integration with district heating or industrial processes.

In this thesis integration of large-scale BMG, for biofuel or electricity production, with other parts of the energy system is analysed. Focus is on forest-based biomass, with the analysis including techno-economic aspects as well as considerations regarding effects on global fossil CO2 emissions. The analysis has been done using two approaches – bottom-up with detailed case studies of BMG integrated with local systems, and top-down with BMG studied on a European scale.

The results show that BMG-based biofuel or electricity production can constitute economically interesting alternatives for integration with district heating or pulp and paper production. However, due to uncertainties concerning future energy market conditions and due to the large capital commitment of investment in BMG technology, forceful economic support policies will be needed if BMG is a desired route for the future energy system, unless oil and electricity prices are high enough to provide sufficient incentives for BMG-based biofuel or electricity production. While BMG-based biofuel production could make integration with either district heating or pulp and paper production economically attractive, BIGCC shows considerably more promise if integrated with pulp and paper production than with district heating.

Bioenergy use is often considered CO2-neutral, because uptake in growing plants is assumed to fully balance the CO2 released when the biomass is combusted. As one of the alternatives in this thesis, biomass is viewed as limited. This means that increased use of bioenergy in one part of the energy system limits the amount of biomass available for other applications, thus increasing the CO2 emissions for those applications. The results show that when such marginal effects of increased biomass use are acknowledged, the CO2 mitigation potential for BMG-based biofuel production becomes highly uncertain. In fact, most of the BMG-based biofuel cases studied in this thesis would lead to an increase rather than the desired decrease of global CO2 emissions, when considering biomass as limited.

Abstract [sv]

Bioenergi spelar en viktig roll för att nå EU:s mål för förnybar energi. Sverige har med sina goda skogstillgångar och sin väletablerade skogsindustri en nyckelposition vad gäller modern bioenergianvändning. Förgasning av biomassa har flera fördelar jämfört med förbränningsbaserade processer - i synnerhet möjligheten att konvertera lågvärdiga råvaror till exempelvis fordonsdrivmedel. Används gasen istället för elproduktion kan en högre verkningsgrad nås om gasen används i en kombicykel, jämfört med i en konventionell ångturbincykel. De förgasningsbaserade processerna har i allmänhet ett betydande överskott av värme, vilket möjliggör integrering med fjärrvärmesystem eller industriella processer.

I denna avhandling analyseras integrering av storskalig biomassaförgasning för drivmedelseller elproduktion, med andra delar av energisystemet. Skogsbaserad biomassa är i fokus och analysen behandlar såväl teknoekonomiska aspekter, som effekter på globala fossila CO2-utsläpp. Forskningen har gjorts på två olika systemnivåer - dels i form av detaljerade fallstudier av biomassaförgasning integrerat med lokala svenska system, dels i form av systemstudier på europeisk nivå.

Resultaten visar att förgasningsbaserad biodrivmedels- eller elproduktion kan komma att utgöra ekonomiskt intressanta alternativ för integrering med fjärrvärme eller massa- och papperstillverkning. På grund av osäkerheter i fråga om framtida energimarknadsförhållanden och på grund av de höga kapitalkostnaderna som investering i förgasningsanläggningar innebär, kommer kraftfulla ekonomiska styrmedel krävas om biomassaförgasning är en önskad utvecklingsväg för framtidens energisystem, såvida inte olje- och elpriserna är höga nog att i sig skapa tillräckliga incitament. Medan förgasningsbaserad drivmedelsproduktion kan vara ekonomiskt attraktivt att integrera med såväl fjärrvärme som med massa- och papperstillverkning, framstår förgasningsbaserad elproduktion som betydligt mer lovande vid integrering med massa- och papperstillverkning.

Användning av bioenergi anses ofta vara CO2-neutralt, eftersom upptaget av CO2 i växande biomassa antas balansera den CO2 som frigörs när biomassan förbränns. Som ett av alternativen i denna avhandling ses biomassa som begränsad, vilket innebär att ökad användning av bioenergi i en del av energisystemet begränsar den tillgängliga mängden biomassa för andra användare, vilket leder till ökade CO2-utsläpp för dessa. Resultaten visar att när hänsyn tas till denna typ av marginella effekter av ökad biomassaanvändning, blir potentialen för minskade globala CO2-utsläpp med hjälp av förgasningsbaserade tillämpningar mycket osäker. I själva verket skulle de flesta av de förgasningsbaserade drivmedel som studerats i denna avhandling leda till en utsläppsökning, snarare än den önskade minskningen.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2012. , 79 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 1429
Keyword [en]
Biomass gasification, second-generation biofuels, global CO2 emissions, energy system optimisation
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-74576ISBN: 978-91-7519-955-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-74576DiVA: diva2:488688
Public defence
2012-03-02, sal ACAS, hus A, Campus Valla, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 10:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2012-02-02 Created: 2012-02-02 Last updated: 2012-08-20Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Implications of system expansion for the assessment of well-to-wheel CO2 emissions from biomass based transportation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Implications of system expansion for the assessment of well-to-wheel CO2 emissions from biomass based transportation
2010 (English)In: International journal of energy research (Print), ISSN 0363-907X, E-ISSN 1099-114X, Vol. 34, no 13, 1136-1154 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper we show the effects of expanding the system when evaluating well-to-wheel (WTW) CO2 emissions for biomass-based transportation, to include the systems surrounding the biomass conversion system. Four different cases are considered: DME via black liquor gasification (BLG), methanol via gasification of solid biomass, lignocellulosic ethanol and electricity from a biomass integrated gasification combined cycle (BIGCC) used in a battery-powered electric vehicle (BPEV). All four cases are considered with as well as without carbon capture and storage (CCS). System expansion is used consistently for all flows. The results are compared with results from a conventional WTW study that only uses system expansion for certain co-product flows.

It is shown that when expanding the system, biomass-based transportation does not necessarily contribute to decreased CO2 emissions and the results from this study in general indicate considerably lower CO2 mitigation potential than do the results from the conventional study used for comparison. It is shown that of particular importance are assumptions regarding future biomass use, as by expanding the system, future competition for biomass feedstock can be taken into account by assuming an alternative biomass usage. Assumptions regarding other surrounding systems, such as the transportation and the electricity systems are also shown to be of significance.

Of the four studied cases without CCS, BIGCC with the electricity used in a BPEV is the only case that consistently shows a potential for CO2 reduction when alternative use of biomass is considered. Inclusion of CCS is not a guarantee for achieving CO2 reduction, and in general the system effects are equivalent or larger than the effects of CCS. DME from BLG generally shows the highest CO2 emission reduction potential for the biofuel cases. However, neither of these options for biomass-based transportation can alone meet the needs of the transport sector. Therefore, a broader palette of solutions, including different production routes, different fuels and possibly also CCS, will be needed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 2010
Keyword
Second generation biofuels; Lignocellulosic biofuels; System expansion; Well-to-wheel; CO2 emissions; CCS
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-60429 (URN)10.1002/er.1633 (DOI)
Available from: 2010-10-13 Created: 2010-10-13 Last updated: 2012-02-02Bibliographically approved
2. Biomass gasification opportunities in a district heating system
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Biomass gasification opportunities in a district heating system
2010 (English)In: Biomass and Bioenergy, ISSN 0961-9534, Vol. 34, no 5, 637-651 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper evaluates the economic effects and the potential for reduced CO2 emissions when biomass gasification applications are introduced in a Swedish district heating (DH) system. The gasification applications included in the study deliver heat to the DH network while producing renewable electricity or biofuels. Gasification applications included are: external superheater for steam from waste incineration (waste boost, WE), gas engine CHP (BIGGE), combined cycle CHP (BIGCC) and production of synthetic natural gas (SNG) for use as transportation fuel. Six scenarios are used, employing two time perspectives - short-term and medium-term - and differing in economic input data, investment options and technical system. To evaluate the economic performance an optimisation model is used to identify the most profitable alternatives regarding investments and plant operation while meeting the DH demand. This study shows that introducing biomass gasification in the DH system will lead to economic benefits for the DH supplier as well as reduce global CO2 emissions. Biomass gasification significantly increases the potential for production of high value products (electricity or SNG) in the DH system. However, which form of investment that is most profitable is shown to be highly dependent on the level of policy instruments for biofuels and renewable electricity. Biomass gasification applications can thus be interesting for DH suppliers in the future, and may be a vital measure to reach the 2020 targets for greenhouse gases and renewable energy, given continued technology development and long-term policy instruments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam., 2010
Keyword
Biomass gasification, District heating, Optimisation, Global CO2 emissions, Energy system, Biorefinery
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-56808 (URN)10.1016/j.biombioe.2010.01.007 (DOI)000277918300007 ()
Note
Original Publication: Kristina Difs, Elisabeth Wetterlund, Louise Trygg and Mats Söderström, Biomass gasification opportunities in a district heating system, 2010, BIOMASS and BIOENERGY, (34), 5, 637-651. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biombioe.2010.01.007 Copyright: Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. http://www.elsevier.com/ Available from: 2010-06-04 Created: 2010-06-04 Last updated: 2012-02-02Bibliographically approved
3. Biomass gasification in district heating systems - The effect of economic energy policies
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Biomass gasification in district heating systems - The effect of economic energy policies
2010 (English)In: Applied Energy, ISSN 0306-2619, E-ISSN 1872-9118, Vol. 87, no 9, 2914-2922 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Biomass gasification is considered a key technology in reaching targets for renewable energy and CO2 emissions reduction. This study evaluates policy instruments affecting the profitability of biomass gasification applications integrated in a Swedish district heating (DH) system for the medium-term future (around year 2025). Two polygeneration applications based on gasification technology are considered in this paper: (1) a biorefinery plant co-producing synthetic natural gas (SNG) and district heat; (2) a combined heat and power (CHP) plant using integrated gasification combined cycle technology. Using an optimisation model we identify the levels of policy support, here assumed to be in the form of tradable certificates, required to make biofuel production competitive to biomass based electricity generation under various energy market conditions. Similarly, the tradable green electricity certificate levels necessary to make gasification based electricity generation competitive to conventional steam cycle technology, are identified. The results show that in order for investment in the SNG biorefinery to be competitive to investment in electricity production in the DH system, biofuel certificates in the range of 24-42 EUR/MWh are needed. Electricity certificates are not a prerequisite for investment in gasification based CHP to be competitive to investment in conventional steam cycle CHP, given sufficiently high electricity prices. While the required biofuel policy support is relatively insensitive to variations in capital cost, the required electricity certificates show high sensitivity to variations in investment costs. It is concluded that the large capital commitment and strong dependency on policy instruments makes it necessary that DH suppliers believe in the long-sightedness of future support policies, in order for investments in large-scale biomass gasification in DH systems to be realised.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam., 2010
Keyword
Biomass gasification; Energy policy; District heating; Energy system optimisation; Biorefinery
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-58244 (URN)10.1016/j.apenergy.2009.11.032 (DOI)000279710500022 ()
Available from: 2010-08-10 Created: 2010-08-09 Last updated: 2012-02-02
4. Systems analysis of integrating biomass gasification with pulp and paper production - Effects on economic performance, CO2 emissions and energy use
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Systems analysis of integrating biomass gasification with pulp and paper production - Effects on economic performance, CO2 emissions and energy use
2011 (English)In: Energy, ISSN 0360-5442, E-ISSN 1873-6785, Vol. 36, no 2, 932-941 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper evaluates system aspects of biorefineries based on biomass gasification integrated with pulp and paper production. As a case the Billerud Karlsborg mill is used. Two biomass gasification concepts are considered: BIGDME (biomass integrated gasification dimethyl ether production) and BIGCC (biomass integrated gasification combined cycle). The systems analysis is made with respect to economic performance, global CO2 emissions and primary energy use. As reference cases. BIGDME and BIGCC integrated with district heating are considered. Biomass gasification is shown to be potentially profitable for the mill. The results are highly dependent on assumed energy market parameters, particularly policy support. With strong policies promoting biofuels or renewable electricity, the calculated opportunity to invest in a gasification-based biorefinery exceeds investment cost estimates from the literature. When integrated with district heating the BIGDME case performs better than the BIGCC case, which shows high sensitivity to heat price and annual operating time. The BIGCC cases show potential to contribute to decreased global CO2 emissions and energy use, which the BIGDME cases do not, mainly due to high biomass demand. As biomass is a limited resource, increased biomass use due to investments in gasification plants will lead to increased use of fossil fuels elsewhere in the system.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam., 2011
Keyword
Biomass gasification, Biorefinery, Energy systems analysis, Biofuels, Pulp and paper production
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-67024 (URN)10.1016/j.energy.2010.12.017 (DOI)000288102600026 ()
Note
Original Publication: Elisabeth Wetterlund, Karin Pettersson and Simon Harvey, Systems analysis of integrating biomass gasification with pulp and paper production - Effects on economic performance, CO2 emissions and energy use, 2011, ENERGY, (36), 2, 932-941. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.energy.2010.12.017 Copyright: Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. http://www.elsevier.com/ Available from: 2011-03-25 Created: 2011-03-25 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved
5. Biomass gasification integrated with a pulp and paper mill - the need for economic policies promoting biofuels
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Biomass gasification integrated with a pulp and paper mill - the need for economic policies promoting biofuels
2010 (English)In: Chemical Engineering Transactions, ISSN 1974-9791, Vol. 21, 1207-1212 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this study we analyse economic policy support for biofuels, with the aim to determine the amount of support necessary to make investments in a gasification based biorefinery producing DME (dimethyl ether) profitable for a pulp and paper mill. As a case the integrated Swedish pulp and paper mill of Billerud Karlsborg is studied, using mixed integer linear programming and different future energy market scenarios. The results show that the required support is strongly connected to the price ratio of oil to biomass, with the support ranging from 10 EUR/MWh biofuel (lower than the present tax exemption of 14 EUR/MWh) to 61 EUR/MWh. The required support is shown to be sensitive to changes of the capital cost, but not to the pulp and paper production rate of the host mill. It is concluded that strong policy instruments will be required for forest industry based biorefineries to be desirable for the future.

Keyword
Biomass gasification; Energy policy; Energy system optimisation; Biorefinery
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-60425 (URN)10.3303/CET1021202 (DOI)
Note
Presented at PRES, Prague, August 28-September 1 2010Available from: 2010-10-13 Created: 2010-10-13 Last updated: 2012-02-02
6. Optimal localisation of biofuel production on a European scale
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Optimal localisation of biofuel production on a European scale
2012 (English)In: Energy, ISSN 0360-5442, E-ISSN 1873-6785, Vol. 41, no 1, 462-472 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper presents the development and use of an optimisation model suitable for analysis of biofuel production scenarios in the EU, with the aim of examining second generation biofuel production. Two policy instruments are considered – targeted biofuel support and a CO2 cost. The results show that over 3% of the total transport fuel demand can be met by second generation biofuels at a cost of approximately 65-73 EUR/MWh. With current energy prices, this demands biofuel support comparable to existing tax exemptions (around 30 EUR/MWh), or a CO2 cost of around 60 EUR/tCO2. Parameters having large effect on biofuel production include feedstock availability, fossil fuel price and capital costs. It is concluded that in order to avoid suboptimal energy systems, heat and electricity applications should also be included when evaluating optimal bioenergy use. It is also concluded that while forceful policies promoting biofuels may lead to a high biofuel share at reasonable costs, this is not a certain path towards maximised CO2 emission mitigation. Policies aiming to promote the use of bioenergy thus need to be carefully designed in order to avoid conflicts between different parts of the EU targets for renewable energy and CO2 emission mitigation.

Keyword
Biofuels; Bioenergy; Energy system optimisation; Energy policy; CO2 emissions
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-74574 (URN)10.1016/j.energy.2012.02.051 (DOI)000304076800051 ()
Note
funding agencies|Swedish Energy Agency||Swedish Research Council Formas and Angpanneffireningens Foundation for Research and Development||EC||Available from: 2012-02-02 Created: 2012-02-02 Last updated: 2017-12-08
7. Optimal use of forest residues in Europe under different policies — second generation biofuels versus combined heat and power
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Optimal use of forest residues in Europe under different policies — second generation biofuels versus combined heat and power
2013 (English)In: Biomass Conversion and Biorefinery, ISSN 2190-6823, Vol. 3, no 1, 3-16 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The European Union has set a 10 % target for the share of renewable energy in the transportation sector for 2020. To reach this target, second generation biofuels from, for example, forest residues are expected to replace around 3 % of the transport fossil fuel consumption. However, forest residues could also be utilised in the heat and electricity sectors where large amounts of fossil fuels can be replaced, thus reducing global fossil CO2 emissions. This study investigates the use of forest residues for second generation biofuel (ethanol or methanol) or combined heat and power (CHP) production at the European level, with focus on the influence of different economic policy instruments, such as carbon cost or biofuel policy support. A techno-economic, geographically explicit optimisation model is used. The model determines the optimal locations of bioenergy conversion plants by minimising the cost of the entire supply chain. The results show that in order to reach a 3 % second generation biofuel share, a biofuel support comparable to today’s tax exemptions would be needed. With a carbon cost applied, most available forest residues would be allocated to CHP production, with a substantial resulting CO2 emission reduction potential. The major potential for woody biomass and biofuel production is found in the region around the Baltic Sea, with Italy as one of the main biofuel importers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2013
Keyword
Bioenergy, Second generation biofuels, Energy system optimisation, Energy policy, CO2 emissions
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-74575 (URN)10.1007/s13399-012-0054-2 (DOI)
Note

On the day of the defence day the titel of the publication was Second generation biofuel potential in Europe.

Available from: 2012-02-02 Created: 2012-02-02 Last updated: 2017-02-08Bibliographically approved

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