January 8, 2007

Biomass Power Generation using Gasification

Maximizing heat and electricity BIOoutput are the typical targets of biomass gasification research. Here is a good example of current efforts to use clean gasification technology to reduce waste in the service of generating electricity and heat.

Demonstration under Way for EERC-Developed Biomass Power Generation System
January 4, 2007
(GRAND FORKS, NORTH DAKOTA) -- The University of North Dakota Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) will demonstrate a biomass gasification power generation system to turn a low-value waste material into valuable heat and electricity at the Grand Forks Truss Plant in Grand Forks, North Dakota.

The biomass gasification power generation system, developed by the EERC's Center for Renewable Energy through several years of projects with the U.S. Department of Energy and commercial industry, will convert the sawdust and wood waste from the building product plant into a combustible gas to produce heat and electricity. The system is designed to match typical power requirements of various manufacturing industries generating between 10 kW to 1 MW of power.

"This power system provides unique energy solutions to industrial clients by producing heat and electrical power from a variety of fuels, including waste materials and other organic feedstocks," said Darren Schmidt, EERC Research Manager. "The power generation and consumption of the lumber scraps ultimately provide a cost savings for the Truss Plant."

"We are very excited and proud to host a project involving renewable energy. We have a vast supply of biomass waste and continue to produce more than we can utilize in our current heating system," said Shaun Johnson, Plant Operations, Grand Forks Truss. "We were considering options to better utilize our wood waste when, by chance, the EERC came to us with the answer. It's exciting to watch a research project, developed locally, being applied and unfold before us. It is an important step forward in the global goal of better utilizing our natural resources," he said.

"There are numerous applications for biomass gasification, which is being sought by numerous corporate partners and has global implications," said EERC Director Gerald Groenewold. "This project is based on the EERC's 12 years of biomass utilization experience and over 50 years of gasification experience, as well as 2 years of development and operation of a full-scale portable power plant here at our facilities," he said.

The project is being conducted under the EERC's Center for Renewable Energy (formerly the Center for Biomass Utilization) and the National Center for Hydrogen Technology (NCHT), two of the EERC's ten Centers of Excellence. The technology also has potential applications in the production of hydrogen from other renewable and fossil fuel sources.

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Harmonious Posh said...

It's great to see this type of activity in the US. In europe, this type of energy has been in use successfully for over 50 years! It really does work!