Energy efficient storage of biomass at Vattenfall heat and power plant

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Abstract:

Storage of biomass is often associated with problems such as heat development, drymatter losses and reduction of fuel quality. The rise in temperature can potentiallycause a risk of self-ignition in the fuel storage. Moreover, emissions from storage pilescan cause health problems in the surrounding. The dry matter losses and reduction offuel quality can have economical effects. The aim of this thesis project is to developguidelines on how to store large amount of biomass at Vattenfalls heat and powerplants in an optimal way. Storage trials at Idbäckens CHP were done in order to studythe effect of storage on fuel quality, dry matter losses and temperature development.Two storage trials were performed over six weeks with waste wood chips and stemwood chips stored in about 4.5 m high outdoor piles. A trial over four days in whichwaste wood chips was placed on a heated surface was evaluated. A study to test thepossibility of using waste heat to dry waste wood chips was performed.Small but not negligible dry matter losses were observed in both of the piles of storedmaterial. The largest weekly losses were found during the first week of storage and adeclining behavior could thereafter be seen. The accumulated losses during six weeksof storage were 2.0 % and 1.7 % respectively, for waste wood and stem wood. Storageduring six weeks of waste wood and newly chipped stem wood did not cause anymajor deterioration of the fuel quality as such, beside the substance losses.No drying effect could be seen in the heated surface trial. The surface became warm,about 50°C, but it was not sufficient to dry the chips. The conclusion is that it is notpossible to dry large amount of chips on a heated surface with the design used hereand during four days.The overall conclusion is that in order to minimize the dry matter losses the materialshould be handled according to the LIFO (last in first out) principle. Wheneverpossible, try to purchase fuel that has been stored for a while since the more easilydegraded compounds has already been degraded through microbial activity. There is apossibility that the largest losses has already occurred. Furthermore, try also tocomminute the material (reduce the particle size) at the plant and as close in time tocombustion as possible.

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