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Clean Energy Project Analysis Course © Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Photo Credut: Bioenerginovator Biomass Heating Project Analysis Biomass District Heating Plant, Sweden
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Objectives Review basics of Biomass Heating Systems Review basics of Biomass Heating Systems Illustrate key considerations for Biomass Heating project analysis Illustrate key considerations for Biomass Heating project analysis Introduce RETScreen ® Biomass Heating Project Model Introduce RETScreen ® Biomass Heating Project Model
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Heat for Heat for Buildings Communities Industrial processes …but also… Job creation A use for waste materials An opportunity to use district heating and waste heat recovery What do biomass heating systems provide? Photo Credit: Centrales Agrar-Rohstoff-Marketing- und Entwicklungs-Netzwork District Heating Plant, Heat Provided from Rapeseed, Germany
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Biomass Heating System Description Heating Plant Heating Plant Waste heat recovery system Biomass combustion system for base load Peak load heating system Optional backup system Heat Distribution System Heat Distribution System Hot water supply, cold water return For single building or district heating system Fuel Supply Operation Fuel Supply Operation Fuel receiving, storage, and transport facilities Typically automated fuel transfer from day bin to combustion Photo Credit: Bioenergia Suomessa Small Diameter Wood Waste Packaged in Bales, Finland
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Biomass Heating System Description (Cont.) Diagram: Buyer’s Guide To Small Commercial Biomass Combustion Systems NRCan
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Peak vs. Base Load Systems The biomass system can be sized for: Peak load Peak load Biofuel use maximized and fossil fuel use minimized Larger, more expensive system Part load operation lowers efficiency if load variable Base load Base load Operates near design capacity, so efficiency high Capital costs much lower Conventional system required for peak load
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – District Heating Systems Heat from a central plant can be distributed to multiple nearby buildings for heating and service hot water Heat from a central plant can be distributed to multiple nearby buildings for heating and service hot water Insulated steel pipes are buried 0.6 to 0.8 m underground Advantages compared to each building having own plant: Advantages compared to each building having own plant: Higher efficiency Lower emissions Safety Comfort Operating convenience Initial costs high Initial costs high Needs more attention than fossil fuel systems Needs more attention than fossil fuel systems Photo Credit: SweHeat District Heating PlantDistrict Heat Hot Water Pipes
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Biomass fuels (feedstocks) include Biomass fuels (feedstocks) include Wood & wood residues (chunks, sawdust, pellets, chips) Agricultural residues (straw, chaff, husks, animal litter and manure) Energy crops (hybrid poplars, switchgrass, willows) Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Important feedstock considerations Important feedstock considerations Heating value and moisture content Reliability, security, and price stability of supply Transportation and storage facilities Biomass Fuels Photo Credit: Warren Gretz/ NREL Pix Photo Credit: ECOMatters Inc Wood for Biomass Combustion Walnut Shells for Biomass Combustion
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – If harvested in sustainable manner: If harvested in sustainable manner: Zero net production of greenhouse gases Low sulphur content reduces acid rain Low sulphur content reduces acid rain Emissions of local air pollutants Emissions of local air pollutants Particulates (soot) Gaseous pollutants Trace carcinogens May be subject to regulation Environmental Attributes of Biomass Fuels Photo credit: Warren Gretz/NREL Pix Photo Credit: Bioenerginovator Bagasse Wood chips
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Examples of Biomass Heating System Costs For a 150 kW system to heat a 800 m 2 building: For a 150 kW system to heat a 800 m 2 building: OilWood chips Initial Costs $21,000$80,000 Annual O&M $1,000$8,000 Annual fuel $18,000$1,700 PriceCost of heat ($/GJ)Electricity$0.08/kWh22.50 Propane$0.40/L15.60 Fuel Oil $0.30/L8.50 Gas $0.20/m Mill residue $10/tonne1.70 Tree chips $40/tonne6.70 High initial costs, potentially low fuel costs: High initial costs, potentially low fuel costs:
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Biomass Heating Project Considerations Availability, quality and price of biomass feedstock versus fossil fuels Availability, quality and price of biomass feedstock versus fossil fuels Future non-energy uses of biomass (e.g., pulp) Long term contracts Space available for fuel delivery, storage, and large boiler Space available for fuel delivery, storage, and large boiler Dedicated and reliable operators necessary Dedicated and reliable operators necessary Fuel procurement and handling ash removal Environmental regulations on air quality and ash disposal Environmental regulations on air quality and ash disposal Insurance and safety issues Insurance and safety issues
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Examples: Austria, Germany and Slovenia Community Energy Systems Groups of buildings including schools, hospitals, and clusters of residences Groups of buildings including schools, hospitals, and clusters of residences Photo Credit: Ken Sheinkopf/ Solstice CREST Photo Credit: Centrales Agrar-Rohstoff- Marketing-und Entwicklungs-Netzwerk Automatic Feedstock Handler Wood-Fired Boiler DH Converted from Fossil Fuel to Biomass, Slovenia
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Example: Canada Institutional and Commercial Buildings Individual buildings can provide their own heat from biomass Individual buildings can provide their own heat from biomass Institutional: schools, hospitals, municipal buildings Commercial: stores, garages, etc. Photo Credit: ECOMatters Inc. Small Commercial Biomass Heating System, Canada Photo Credit: Grove Wood Heat
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Examples: Brazil and USA Process Heat Often used where biomass is produced and process heat required Often used where biomass is produced and process heat required Saw mills, sugar and alcohol factories, furniture manufacturing sites, and drying sites for agricultural processes. Photo Credit: Ken Sheinkopf/ Solstice CREST Photo Credit: Ralph Overend/ NREL PixPhoto Credit: Warren Gretz/ NREL Pix Interior of a Combustion Chamber Bagasse for Process Heat in Mill, Brazil Sugar Cane for Process Heat, Hawaii
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – RETScreen ® Biomass Heating Project Model World-wide analysis of energy production, life-cycle costs and greenhouse gas emissions reductions World-wide analysis of energy production, life-cycle costs and greenhouse gas emissions reductions Individual buildings to large clusters with district heat Biomass, peak, backup and waste-heat recovery Sizing and costing of district heat piping network Currently not covered: Currently not covered: Large-scale district heating (>2.5 MW) Use CHP Model instead
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – RETScreen ® Biomass Heating Energy Calculation See e-Textbook Clean Energy Project Analysis: RETScreen ® Engineering and Cases Biomass Heating Project Analysis Chapter
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Example Validation of the RETScreen ® Biomass Heating Project Model Calculation of load duration curve Calculation of load duration curve Compared with Swedish DD-IL model for 4 cities in Europe and North America District heating network pipe sizing District heating network pipe sizing Compared with ABB R22 program – good results Heating value of wood Heating value of wood Compared with 87 samples of tree bark from Eastern Canada RETScreen ® estimate for wood waste within 5% of sample data Load Duration Curve for Uppsala, Sweden Number of Hours Percentage of Peak Load RETScreen DD-IL
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Conclusions Biomass heating energy costs can be much lower than conventional heating costs, even when considering higher initial capital costs of biomass systems Biomass heating energy costs can be much lower than conventional heating costs, even when considering higher initial capital costs of biomass systems RETScreen ® calculates load duration curves, required biomass and peak plant capacity, and district heating network pipe sizes using minimal input data RETScreen ® calculates load duration curves, required biomass and peak plant capacity, and district heating network pipe sizes using minimal input data RETScreen ® provides significant preliminary feasibility study cost savings RETScreen ® provides significant preliminary feasibility study cost savings
© Minister of Natural Resources Canada 2001 – Questions? Biomass Heating Project Analysis Module RETScreen ® International Clean Energy Project Analysis Course For further information please visit the RETScreen Website at
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