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Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2017

Sorghum, a sustainable feedstock for biogas production? Impact of climate, variety and harvesting time on maturity and biomass yield

Wannasek L Ortner M Amon B Amon T. Sorghum, a sustainable feedstock for biogas production? Impact of climate, variety and harvesting time on maturity and biomass yield. BIOMASS BIOENERG. 2017; 106: 137-145

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Contributions to trade journals | 2017

Startups in Kalifornien – Kollaborationsmodell im Energiebereich

Stadler M., Temper M., Haslinger W. Startups in Kalifornien – Kollaborationsmodell im Energiebereich. Impulsreferat Energy.Inc.Ubator, Start-ups als Katalysator in F&E für marktfähige Energiesystemlösungen. Co-Creation-Workshop. Bundesministerium für Verkehr, Innovation und Technologie. Österreich, 22. September 2017.

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Conference Papers | 2015

State of the art biomass gasification for CHP production – the Ulm plant

Kirnbauer F, Maierhans F, Kuba M, Hofbauer H. State of the art biomass gasification for CHP production – the Ulm plant. Regatec 2015. 7-8 May 2015, Barcelona, Spain.

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Conference Papers | 2017

State of the art dual fluidized bed gasification of biomass in industrial scale

Kuba M, Kirnbauer F, Hofbauer H. State of the art dual fluidized bed gasification of biomass in industrial scale. 5th Central European Biomass Conference (oral presentation). January 2017, Graz, Austria.

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Conference contributions | 2012

State-of-the-art and assessment of filter technologies for residential biomass combustion systems

Obernberger I. State-of-the-art and assessment of filter technologies for residential biomass combustion systems, IEA Bioenergy Conference 2012, 13th-15th of November 2012, Vienna, Austria.

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Conference contributions | 2009

State-of-the-art and comparison of incineration and gasification of residues and waste

Wilk V, Hofbauer H. State-of-the-art and comparison of incineration and gasification of residues and waste. Junior Scientist Conference 2010, 7th-9th May 2010, Vienna, Austria.

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Thermal treatment of residues and waste is an important issue with increasing demand. In this work two pathways of thermal waste treatment, incineration and gasification, are compared. For this purpose literature on both technologies has been reviewed and the state-of-art technology for waste incineration and gasification is presented. The comparison highlights the strengths and weaknesses of both technologies and identifies future potentials.


Contributions at other events | 2009

State-of-the-art and comparison of incineration and gasification of residues and waste

Wilk, V. State-of-the-art and comparison of incineration and gasification of residues and waste, Doctoral Thesis, Vienna University of Technology, Vienna, Austria, 2009.

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More and more waste is generated every year, which has to be disposed. There is a legal obligation to treat waste before it can be landfilled in the European Union. Thus, thermal waste treatment is a very important issue.
In this work two pathways of thermal waste treatment, incineration and gasification, are compared. For this purpose, literature on both technologies has been reviewed and the stateof‐art technology for waste incineration and gasification is presented. The comparison highlights the strengths and weaknesses of both technologies and identifies future potentials. In Europe waste incineration is the state‐of‐the‐art technology ensuring destruction of the pollutants and allowing recovery of the energy content of the waste. A waste incineration plant consists of a furnace, where the waste is incinerated and the chemically bonded energy of the waste is discharged as heat. The hot flue gases pass the heat to the water in the heating surfaces of the steam generator. The energy of the waste can be used for the generation of hot water, steam of electrical power. Then the flue gas has to be cleaned in the air pollution control system. Dust is precipitated, HCl and HF is removed in an acid scrubber and SO2 in an alkaline scrubber. A catalytic reaction destroys dioxins and furans and reduces the emissions of NOx. Due to waste incineration the volume of the residues, which have to be landfilled, is
reduced by 90%. The second pathway of thermal waste treatment is waste gasification, where solid carbonaceous materials are converted into combustible gases by reaction with gasification agents. Due to gas production, not only the energy content of the waste can be recovered but the product range is extended. The producer gas can be converted into heat and power in a conventional steam boiler but also combusted in gas engines or turbines with higher efficiencies. In a combined cycle plant the hot exhaust gas of the turbine can be used in a heat recovery steam generator to increase the efficiency even more. After further cleaning the producer gas is also a suitable feedstock for synthesis of liquid fuels, synthetic natural gas and other chemicals.
Waste gasification processes have been developed in the past, but the plants have been shut down because of economic reasons and/or technical problems. However, important research has been done in the field of biomass gasification and thus gasification technology has been improved markedly. The fluidised bed gasifier in Güssing is one of the most successful examples; this technology is about to be commercialised. Considering these developments, there is definitely interesting potential for waste gasification now and the design of a new waste gasification process based on the findings in biomass gasification will be the scope of future research work.


Conference contributions | 2012

State‐of‐the‐art and assessment of filter technologies for residential biomass combustion systems

Mandl C, Obernberger I, Biedermann F. State‐of‐the‐art and assessment of filter technologies for residential biomass combustion systems, 20th European Biomass Conference 2012, 18th-22nd of June 2012, Milano, Italy. p 732-738.

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The objectives of the present study were to: (a) develop an appropriate estimation method for assessing the characteristic ash melting temperatures of different biomass fuels by means of thermodynamic equilibrium calculations (TEC) based on ash analysis data, (b) estimate the correlation between the results obtained from TEC and the experimentally received data for the melting temperatures using a TGA/DSC-method (thermogravimetric analysis/differential scanning calorimetry) and, (c) evaluate the applicability of the TEC and DSC methods as prediction tools for the melting behaviour of biomass ashes in relation to the conventional ash melting test according to DIN 51730. The results are presented for four selected biomass ash samples: straw, miscanthus, beech and bark (spruce). The agreement between the results obtained from TEC and experimental results (TGA/DSC and standard ash melting test) was reasonably good. For comparison between the experimental results and TEC regarding the deformation temperature it is recommended to utilize the temperature range between T15 and T30 estimated by TEC at 15 wt% and 30 wt% molten phase respectively. Differences between calculated melting temperatures T30 for straw (770°C) and bark (1,280°C) on the one side, and experimentally determined data on the other side are lower than 100°C. In the case of miscanthus and beech ash the prediction was with a deviation of around 200°C less precise. Flow temperatures measured as per standard test (DIN 51730) show generally a good agreement with the TEC fusion temperatures at 70 wt% of molten fraction (T70) for straw, miscanthus and bark ash. In case of beech ash is the TEC prediction of T70 (>1,600°C) moved to higher temperatures compared to experimental expected 1,380°C. The results of this study in combination with reliable databases and an appropriate calculation model, qualify the thermodynamic equilibrium calculations as a useful technique for a prediction of the ash melting behaviour including the assessment of characteristic melting temperatures.


Conference contributions | 2012

STATUS and FUTURE of bioSNG in EUROPE

Rauch R. STATUS and FUTURE of bioSNG in EUROPE, IEA Bioenergy Conference 2012, 13th-15th of November 2012, Vienna, Austria.

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Conference contributions | 2014

Status fortschrittlicher Biokraftstoffe

Bacovsky D. Status fortschrittlicher Biokraftstoffe, 7. EID Kraftstoff-Forum 2014, 18th-19th of March 2014, Hamburg, Germany

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Conference contributions | 2009

Status of BioSNG Production and FT Fuels from Biomass Steam Gasification

Rauch R. Status of BioSNG Production and FT Fuels from Biomass Steam Gasification, 4th BTLtec Biomass to Liquids 2009, 24th-25th of September, 2009 Graz, Austria.

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Conference contributions | 2009

Status of Development of Synthetic Biofuels from Biomass in Austria

Rauch R. Status of Development of Synthetic Biofuels from Biomass in Austria, Alternative Propulsion Systems and Energy Carriers 2009, 16th of October 2009, Vienna, Austria.

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Conference contributions | 2013

Steam gasification of challenging fuels in the dual fluidized bed gasifier

Wilk V, Hofbauer H. Steam gasification of challenging fuels in the dual fluidized bed gasifier, 21st European Biomass Conference and Exhibition 2013, 3rd-7th of June 2013, Copenhagen, Denmark.

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In order to enlarge the range of feedstock for the dual fluidized bed (DFB) gasification process, the influence of several fuel properties was studied in the 100 kW DFB pilot plant. Fuels with high concentration of nitrogen and sulfur, fuels with an increased concentration of fine particles, and fuels with extremely high content of volatiles were tested. The DFB gasification system is found to be robust and can handle all the materials. Nitrogen, sulfur and chlorine from the fuel are predominantly converted in the gasification reactor, either to gases (nitrogen, sulfur) or bound to ash (chlorine, sulfur). For the performance of the DFB gasifier, sufficient contact of fuel, product gas and bed material is important. Increasing amounts of fine particles or volatiles in the fuels lead to higher tar loads in the product gas, because the residence time of fuel particles in bubbling fluidized bed is shorter.


Conference contributions | 2012

Steigerung des Jahreswirkungsgrads von Pelletsheizungen

Schmidl C. Steigerung des Jahreswirkungsgrads von Pelletsheizungen, 12. Industrieforum Pellets 2012, 9th-10th of October 2012, Berlin, Germany.

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Books / Bookchapters | 2013

Storage and pre-treatment of substrates for biogas production

Bochmann G, Montgomery L. Storage and pre-treatment of substrates for biogas production. The biogas handbook. ISBN 978 0 85709 498 8 2013:85-103.

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Biogas substrates are typically moist, which can make them difficult to store because bacteria and mould can grow on them. Ensiling, which involves the production of acid by lactic acid bacteria, is often used to preserve crops cheaply. Biogas substrates are also often fibrous, which can make them difficult to mix and means that some of their energy is locked up within the fibres. Different pre-treatment technologies are being investigated to access the energy in these fibres, to increase the rate of biogas production and to improve the mixing qualities of the substrates. Pre-treatment technologies are based on three principles: physical (including mechanical shear, heat, pressure and electric fields), chemical (acids, bases and solvents) and biological (microbial and enzymatic). Combinations of these principles are also used, including steam explosion, extrusion and thermo-chemical processes. Although many of these processes have been investigated at small scale, few have been analysed at large scale in un-biased studies. Many of these techniques are associated with high energy input (e.g. mechanical and heat pre-treatment), high equipment costs (e.g. mechanical systems where the blades erode) or use large volumes of chemicals (e.g. alkali pre-treatment). Different pre-treatment technologies work better with different substrates, and more research is required in this field to understand which combinations are worthwhile. This chapter describes some of the common pre-treatment technologies along with some advantages and disadvantages.


Conference contributions | 2012

Strategic Research Priorities for Biomass Technology

Haslinger W. Strategic Research Priorities for Biomass Technology, 4th Annual Meeting of the RHC-platform biomass panel 2012, 10th of October 2012, Berlin, Germany.

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Contributions to trade journals | 2014

Strategy for the application of novel characterization methods for biomass fuels: Case study of straw

Obernberger I. Strategy for the application of novel characterization methods for biomass fuels: Case study of straw. Energy and Fuels. 2014;28(2):1041-52.

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Because of an increasing interest in the utilization of new and in terms of combustion-related properties rather unknown biomass fuels in heat and power production, advanced fuel characterization tools are gaining rising interest. Currently, ongoing research and development (R&D) focuses on a better and more precise description of the combustion properties of specific biomass fuels by applying new/advanced analysis methods and modeling tools. These novel characterization methods cover combustion tests in specially designed lab reactors, special fuel indices for biomass fuels, and the dedicated application of high-temperature equilibrium calculations. In this paper, a strategy is presented how the information gained from different advanced fuel characterization methods can be combined to characterize a fuel regarding its combustion behavior in a novel way. By means of this strategy, relevant qualitative and quantitative information regarding the ash-melting behavior, aerosol, SOx, HCl, and NOx emissions to be expected, and high-temperature corrosion risks can be gained. In addition, the approach can also be used for the evaluation of additives and fuel blending as measures to improve specific combustion properties. The results show that a much better and clearer picture about the combustion properties of a specific biomass fuel can be provided than by conventional approaches (such as wet chemical analysis or other standardized methods). The results can be used for the preliminary design of plants as well as for evaluation of the applicability of a specific technology for a certain biomass fuel or fuel spectrum. Moreover, they can be applied in combination with computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations for the detailed design and evaluation of furnaces and boilers. © 2014 American Chemical Society.


Conference contributions | 2008

Straw pellets combustion in small-scale boilers. Part 1: Emissions and emission reduction with a novel heat exchanger technology.

Wopienka E, Schwabl M, Emhofer W, Friedl G, Haslinger W, Wörgetter M, Merkl R, Weissinger A. Straw pellets combustion in small-scale boilers. Part 1: Emissions and emission reduction with a novel heat exchanger technology, 16th European Biomass Conference 2008, 2nd-6th of June 2008, Valencia, Spain. p 1386-1392.

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Conference contributions | 2008

Straw pellets combustion in small-scale boilers. Part 2: Corrosion and material optimization.

Emhofer W, Wopienka E, Schwabl M, Friedl G. Straw pellets combustion in small-scale boilers. Part 2: Corrosion and material optimization, 16th European Biomass Conference 2008, 2nd-6th of June 2008, Valencia, Spain. p1500-1503.

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This paper presents one part of the results of a project dealing with straw pellets combustion in small
scale combustion systems. Whereas the other part of the work investigates gaseous and particulate emissions, this part focuses on the results of experiments to determine corrosion of refractory material. Three different types of straw
pellets are combusted in a prototype of a 15 kW residential heating boiler. The fuel samples are natural wheat straw,
wheat straw with alumina based additive and wheat straw with a mixture of calcium-/magnesium carbonate based
additive. Combustion experiments are performed under different operating conditions of the test boiler. Three
different types of refractory material are used as combustion chamber material. The refractory materials are different
mixtures of alumina, silica, zirconia and silicium-carbide. The degree of deterioration of these materials is
investigated for temperatures between 700 and 1300 deg C in the presence of slag formed during combustion of the
straw samples and the influence of the fuel additives on corrosion effects is analysed.


Conference contributions | 2013

Suitable gasification methods and gas cleaning schemes for BtL application of producer gas

Rauch, R. New processes for fuel conversion, gas cleaning and CO2 separation in FB and EF gasification of coal, biomass and waste, Workshop ” Suitable gasification methods and gas cleaning schemes for BtL application of producer gas” (held during the First International Workshop on New processes for fuel conversion, gas cleaning and CO2 separation in FB and EF gasification of coal, biomass and waste) 12th-14th of June, Prague, Czech, 2013.

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Other Presentations | 2015

Survey of modern pellet boilers in Austria and Germany - System design and customer satisfaction of residential installations

Büchner D, Schraube C, Carlon E, von Sonntag J, Schwarz M, Verma VK, Ortwein A. Survey of modern pellet boilers in Austria and Germany - System design and customer satisfaction of residential installations. Applied Energy;160: 390-403.

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The variety of available technical building equipment leads to increasingly complex heating systems with various requirements for efficient operation. Furthermore, in existing buildings the heating system is often historically evolved and contains parts having different ages. Those systems have limited capacity to suit the requirements of replaced components. This paper investigates the operational behavior of small-scale pellet heating systems in Austria and Germany, considering installations in new buildings and boiler replacements in existing buildings and how they are influencing the customer satisfaction.

This investigation was carried out by means of a comprehensive survey for residential customers using pellet fired heating systems. More than 2500 questionnaires were distributed between 2011 and 2013 in Austria, Germany, Greece, Spain and the United Kingdom. In total 293 returned questionnaires were evaluated. The efficiency of the monitored heating systems was estimated using surveyed boiler parameters. Successively, the influence of different operational parameters on the boilers efficiency was evaluated with a statistical analysis, using Pearson correlation coefficient and Spearman correlation.

Results showed that the correct installation of the monitored pellet heating system is easier for new buildings compared to the replacement of old fossil boilers in existing buildings. Optimal operating conditions are characterized by less frequent ignitions and by higher operational loads. Pellet systems operated with a high efficiency in both building types, but for new buildings it is more likely to occur. More than 87% of the participating customers stated that they are highly satisfied with their pellet boiler.


Conference contributions | 2014

Synergies of Wastewater and Microalgae Cultivation

Sonnleitner A, Bacovsky D, Bochmann G, Drosg B, Schagerl M. Synergies of Wastewater and Microalgae Cultivation, Word Sustainable Energy Days next 2014, 26th-28th of February 2014, Wels, Austria.

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Current international research results identify microalgae as a new and promising feedstock for the global energy supply chain. A novel concept to reduce costs and cover the need of water and nutrients is the combination of wastewater treatment and microalgae cultivation. In Austria in particular brewery and dairy effluents as well as municipal wastewater would be suitable for algae cultivation. Cultivation systems practical for the use of wastewater are High Rate Algal Ponds (open system, suspended culture), Algal Turf Scrubbers (open system, immobilized culture) and Photobioreactors (closed systems, suspended culture). The cultivation of microalgae in general and the special case of wastewater as nutrient source face a variety of challenges either concerning the accumulation of microalgal cells in wastewater (upstream process) or their removal and processing (downstream process). Taking a look at the whole production chain shows that for effluents of breweries, dairies
and smale-scale municipal wastewater no feasible concept for the combination of microalgae cultivation and wastewater treatment can be designed. A promising production concept for large-scale municipal wastewater treatment plants are HRAPs or biofilm production in ATS systems for energetic and material pathways. Various R&D challenges are to overcome to lead to an optimization and further development of technologies for combined wastewater treatment and microalgae cultivation in Austria.


Conference contributions | 2013

Synthetic biofuels – do they have a future?

Rauch R. Synthetic biofuels – do they have a future? 8th A3PS Conference Eco-Mobility 2013, 4th of October 2013, Vienna, Austria.

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Conference contributions | 2012

System performance of a storage integrated pellet boiler

Aigenbauer S, Hartl M, Malenkovic I, Simetzberger A, Vverma VK, Schmidl C. System performance of a storage integrated pellet boiler, 20th European Biomass Conference 2012, 18th-22nd of June 2012, Milano, Italy. p 1320-1324.

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A pellet burner directly integrated into the solar storage provides heat and domestic hot water for small
residential applications in an environment-friendly way. The objective of this work was to evaluate the system
performance of a storage integrated pellet boiler in laboratory under transient test conditions. Furthermore, the type
test results according to ÖNORM EN 303-5 [1] of the last decade were compared with monitoring data of systems
with separated boiler and heat storage. The laboratory tests allowed finding relevant parameters and losses, which
influence the system performance. A developed computer simulation model shows the potential to optimize the
performance of the investigated boiler.


Scientific Journals | 2018

Tackling ammonia inhibition for efficient biogas production from chicken manure: Status and technical trends in Europe and China

Fuchs W, Wang X, Gabauer W, Ortner M, Li Z. Tackling ammonia inhibition for efficient biogas production from chicken manure: Status and technical trends in Europe and China (Review). Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 2018;97:186-199.

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The increased global consumption of chicken products has resulted in the generation of huge amounts of manure. Numerous studies emphasized the large potential of this waste as an untapped source of renewable energy through anaerobic digestion (AD). However, intrinsic difficulties, in particular the high N content, induce instable process conditions, including the accumulation of intermediates, and foaming, which reduces methane yields. Such issues limit the widespread application of this energy-rich substrate for biogas production. The process inhibition by ammonia is usually prevented by reducing the concentration of chicken manure through dilution or by operating the plant considerably below its theoretical reactor capacity. However, this process compromises process efficiency, thereby increasing capital investments and operational costs. Another option to achieve optimal process performance is co-digestion with less N-rich materials. However, co-digestion also has its limitations due to the frequent unavailability of sufficient amounts of C-rich substrates. A series of promising technical solutions have been developed to overcome the aforementioned bottlenecks. Examples include stripping or membrane extraction as means to reduce ammonia concentration in the fermenter. Several full-scale plants employing ammonia removal techniques have been installed recently. Latest research also investigated the use of additives, such as zeolites and trace elements, as well as bioaugmentation, to mitigate ammonia inhibition. The current study reviews the state of technology as well as recent achievements and perspectives. It provides an overview of the different approaches to remove ammonia from AD-process and presents practical examples from China and Europe.


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