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Scientific Journals | 2020

Transient CFD simulation of wood log combustion in stoves

Scharler R, Gruber T, Ehrenhöfer A, Kelz J, Mehrabian Bardar R, Bauer T, Hochenauer C, Anca-Couce A. Transient CFD simulation of wood log combustion in stoves. Renewable Energy 2020.145:651-662

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Wood log stoves are a common residential heating technology that produce comparably high pollutant emissions. Within this work, a detailed CFD model for transient wood log combustion in stoves was developed, as a basis for its optimization. A single particle conversion model previously developed by the authors for the combustion of thermally thick biomass particles, i.e. wood logs, was linked with CFD models for flow and turbulence, heat transfer and gas combustion. The sub-models were selected based on a sensitivity analysis and combined into an overall stove model, which was then validated by simulations of experiments with a typical wood log stove, including emission measurements. The comparison with experimental results shows a good accuracy regarding flue gas temperature as well as CO2 and O2 flue gas concentrations. Moreover, the characteristic behavior of CO emissions could be described, with higher emissions during the ignition and burnout phases. A reasonable accuracy is obtained for CO emissions except for the ignition phase, which can be attributed to model simplifications and the stochastic nature of stove operation. Concluding, the CFD model allows a transient simulation of a stove batch for the first time and hence, is a valuable tool for process optimization.


Conference Papers | 2019

Performance evaluation of an electrostatic precipitator in a small-scale biomass boiler by using different biomass feedstocks

Kelz J, Zemann C, Muschick D, Hofmeister G, Gölles M. & Retschitzegger S. Performance evaluation of an electrostatic precipitator in a small-scale biomass boiler by using different biomass feedstocks. Proceedings 27th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition, 27-31 May 2019, Lisbon, Portugal.1932-1938.

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In order to evaluate the performance of an electrostatic precipitator (ESP), comprehensive test runs investigating both particulate matter (PM) and gaseous emissions were performed by using softwood pellets as well as alternative biomass feedstocks such as short rotation coppice (poplar) and biomass residues (maize). An ESP was directly integrated in a commercially available small-scale biomass boiler. Based on wet chemical analyses of the fuels, so-called fuel indexes were calculated to deliver primary information on the expected combustion behaviour. The overall aim was to determine appropriate operating conditions, to optimise combustion parameters in order to minimise PM and gaseous emissions as well as to inhibit ash related problems. This was done by an efficient combination of primary (air staging in combination with an innovative control system) and secondary measures (integration of an ESP) and showed an enormous potential for both, a stable plant operation and reduced PM emissions. Thus the findings provide the basis for developing a fuel flexible, low emission and highly efficient biomass boiler in the sector of small-scale combustion systems.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

A generally applicable, simple and adaptive forecasting method for the short-term heat load of consumers

Nigitz T, Gölles M. A generally applicable, simple and adaptive forecasting method for the short-term heat load of consumers. Applied Energy 2019;241:73-81.

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Energy management systems aiming for an efficient operation of hybrid energy systems with a high share of different renewable energy sources strongly benefit from short-term forecasts for the heat-load. The forecasting methods available in literature are typically tailor-made, complex and non-adaptive. This work condenses these methods to a generally applicable, simple and adaptive forecasting method for the short-term heat load. From a comprehensive literature review as well as the analysis of measurement data from seven different consumers, varying in size and type, the ambient temperature, the time of the day and the day of the week are deduced to be the most dominating factors influencing the heat load. According to these findings, the forecasting method bases on a linear regression model correlating the heat load with the ambient temperature for each hour of the day, additionally differentiating between working days and weekend days. These models are used to predict the future heat load by using forecasts for the ambient temperature from weather service providers. The model parameters are continuously updated by using historical data for the ambient temperature and the heat load, i.e. the forecasting method is adaptive. Additionally, the current prediction error is used to correct the prediction for the near future. Due to their simplicity, all necessary steps of the forecasting method, the update of the model parameters, the prediction based on linear regression models and the correction, can be implemented and computed with little effort. The final evaluation with measurement data from all seven consumers investigated leads to a Mean Absolute Range Normalized Error (MARNE) of 2.9% on average, and proves the general applicability of the forecasting method. In summary, the forecasting method developed is generally applicable, simple and adaptive, making it suitable for the use in energy management systems aiming for an efficient operation of hybrid energy systems.


Scientific Journals | 2019

A practical field trial to assess the potential of Sida hermaphrodita as a versatile, perennial bioenergy crop for Central Europe.

von Gehren P, Gansberger M, Pichler W, Weigl M, Feldmeier S, Wopienka E, Bochmann G. A practical field trial to assess the potential of Sida hermaphrodita as a versatile, perennial bioenergy crop for Central Europe. Biomass and Bioenergy 2019;122:99-108.

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Due to high biomass accumulation ability and multiple ecological benefits, the versatile, perennial bioenergy crop Sida hermaphrodita has sparked the interest of researchers in Central Europe. We assessed the crop's agronomy and bioenergy potential when grown under Austrian climate and soil conditions. A field trial was established in Austria, where the factors planting density and utilization strategy (thermal or biogas) were monitored for three growing seasons. Harvesting lignified biomass for thermal utilization at the end of the growing period resulted in higher dry matter yields than green biomass for biogas utilization which was harvested with a two-cut strategy. Due to lower costs but similar yield, a planting density of 1.77 plants m-2 is preferable over 2.66 plants m-2. The pelletizing process of the biomass was analyzed iteratively in 20 runs to optimize the energy efficiency and process stability while simultaneously increasing pellet durability. A simple drying step, disintegration with a pan grinder mill and pelletizing using a flat die pellet press resulted in stable, high quality pellets. Fuel characteristics of the biomass were favorable and all requirements to be categorized as solid biofuel were met, while combustion tests showed a good applicability of the produced pellets. When green biomass was used for biogas production, a significant drop in methane yield could be noted from the second growing season onward, indicating that older plants are less suitable for biogas production. Our results hint towards the potential of lignified S. hermaphrodita biomass to be used as a solid fuel for energy production.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Ammonia as Promising Fuel for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: Experimental Analysis and Performance Evaluation

Stöckl B, Preininger M, Subotic V, Schröttner H, Sommersacher P, Seidl M, Megel S, Hochenauer C. Ammonia as Promising Fuel for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: Experimental Analysis and Performance Evaluation. ECS Transactions; The Electrochemical Society 2019.91:1601-1610

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n the course of this study the direct utilization of ammonia in different types of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), such as anode- and electrolyte-supported SOFC, is investigated. Experiments in low fuel utilization, exhibited excellent performance of ammonia in SOFCs, although the power outputs of equivalent hydrogen/nitrogen fuels were not attained due to the incomplete endothermic ammonia decomposition. Next, the single cells were operated under high fuel utilization conditions and methane was added to the humidified ammonia stream, where they showed excellent ammonia- and methane conversions. The stability of the cells used was proven over a period of at least 48 hours with a variety of fuel mixtures. Post mortem scanning electron microscopy analysis of the anode micro-structures indicated nitriding effects of nickel, as microscopic pores and enlargements of the metallic parts occurred. Finally, a long-term test over 1,000 hours was carried out using a ten-layer stack consisting of electrolyte-supported cells.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

Assessment of the Behaviour of a Commercial Gasification Plant During Load Modulation and Feedstock Moisture Variation

Antolini D, Hollenstein C, Martini S, Patuzzi F, Zemann C, Felsberger W et al. Assessment of the Behaviour of a Commercial Gasification Plant During Load Modulation and Feedstock Moisture Variation. Waste and Biomass Valorization. 2019 Jun 11. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12649-019-00714-w

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Fixed-bed biomass gasification coupled with internal combustion engines allows an efficient exploitation of biomass for the combined production of heat and power (CHP) at small scale with increased economic viability with respect to combustion-based CHP systems. The main barrier on the way towards a wider market distribution is represented by the fact that a robust practical operation of state-of-the-art fixed-bed biomass gasification systems is limited to very specific fuel properties and steady-state operation. The aim of this work is twofold. On the one hand, it presents the results of a series of test runs performed in a monitored commercial plant under different process conditions, in order to assess its behaviour during load modulation and fuel property variations. On the other hand, an in-house developed thermodynamic equilibrium model was applied to predict the behaviour of the gasification reactor. This gasification model could be used for the development of a model-based control strategy in order to increase the performance of the small-scale gasification system. To assess the general operational behaviour of the whole gasification system an experimental one-week-long test run has been performed by BIOENERGY 2020+ and the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano as round robin test. The plant has been tested under different operating conditions, in particular, varying the load of the engine and the moisture content of the feedstock. The outcomes shown in the present work provide a unique indication about the behaviour of a small-scale fix-bed gasifier working in conditions different from the nominal ones.


Other Presentations | 2019

ÖKO-OPT-QUART - Workshop

Ökonomisch optimiertes Regelungs- und Betriebsverhalten komplexer Energieverbünde zukünftiger Stadtquartiere

Moser A, Muschick D, Gölles M, Mach T, Schranzhofer H, Nageler P, Lerch W, Leusbrock I, Tugores C. ÖKO-OPT-QUART: Ökonomisch optimiertes Regelungs- und Betriebsverhalten komplexer Energieverbünde zukünftiger Stadtquartiere. Workshop im Rahmen des FFG-Projekts ÖKO-OPT-QUART (3. Ausschreibung "Stadt der Zukunft") am 25.01.2019.

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Workshop of the research project ÖKO-OPT-QUART (Ökonomisch optimiertes Regelungs- und Betriebsverhalten komplexer Energieverbünde zukünftiger Stadtquartiere)


Technical Reports | 2019

ÖKO-OPT-QUART Ökonomisch optimiertes Regelungs- und Betriebsverhalten komplexer Energieverbünde zukünftiger Stadtquartiere

Endbericht (Entwurf)

Moser A, Muschick D, Gölles M, Mach T, Schranzhofer H, Leusbrock I, Ribas Tugores C. ÖKO-OPT-QUART Ökonomisch optimiertes Regelungs- und Betriebsverhalten komplexer Energieverbünde zukünftiger Stadtquartiere. Berichte aus Energie- und Umweltforschung. 2019.

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Other publication | 2019

ÖKO-OPT-QUART Leitfaden

Richtlinien, Methoden und Hinweise zur Vorgehensweise bei der Planung und Implementierung von modellprädiktiven Regelungen für komplexe vernetzte Energiesystemen in zukünftigen Stadtquartieren

Moser A, Muschick D, Gölles M. ÖKO-OPT-QUART Leitfaden. Richtlinien, Methoden und Hinweise zur Vorgehensweise bei der Planung und Implementierung von modellprädiktiven Regelungen für komplexe vernetzte Energiesystemen in zukünftigen Stadtquartieren.

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Scientific Journals | 2019

Characterization and performance evaluation of ammonia as fuel for solid oxide fuel cells with Ni/YSZ anodes

Stoeckl B, Subotić V, Preininger M, Schwaiger M, Evic N, Schroettner H, Hochenauer C. Characterization and performance evaluation of ammonia as fuel for solid oxide fuel cells with Ni/YSZ anodes. Electrochimica Acta 2019;298:874-883.

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Ammonia appears to be a promising fuel for solid oxide fuel cell systems: it is a carbon-free species, can be stored easily and offers an excellent energy density with a high hydrogen content. This work shows comprehensive investigations of the direct operation of ammonia on an industrial-sized solid oxide fuel cell with Ni/YSZ anode. In the course of this study, ammonia exhibited excellent performance as a fuel for solid oxide fuel cells, although test results equivalent to those of hydrogen/nitrogen fuel mixtures were not attained. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy proved the reduced performance output of ammonia as fuel to result from its endothermic decomposition. This significantly increased the ohmic resistance, which is mainly influenced by the ammonia flow rate. Operation in counter-flow is more favorable than in co-flow, as lower ohmic and diffusion resistances were measured. Twenty-four-hour stability tests showed stable behavior at 800 °C and a voltage decrease of 2% at 700 °C. Investigations of the anode micro-structure suggest that nickel nitriding occurred, as microscopic pores, particle enlargements, and agglomerations were identified at the metallic parts.


Reviewed Conference Papers | 2019

Co-Simulation of an Energy Management System for Future City District Energy Systems

Moser AGC, Muschick D, Gölles M, Lerch W, Schranzhofer H, Nageler PJ et al. Co-Simulation of an Energy Management System for Future City District Energy Systems. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Innovative Applied Energy. 2019.

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The continuous increase of (volatile) renewable energy production and the development of energy-efficient buildings have led to a transformation of city districts’ energy systems. Their complexity has increased significantly due to the coupling of the different energy sectors like heating, cooling and electricity. Such complex multi-energy systems can be operated more efficiently and reliably if knowledge of their specific components (in terms of mathematical models) as well as knowledge of weather forecasts is incorporated in a high-level controller, which is typically referred to as an Energy Management System (EMS). However, still little comprehensive information on the costs and the practical advantages of such systems is available. For this reason, a simulation environment to estimate the real costs and advantages of the use of such an EMS is required. Consequently, this work focuses on the development of an EMS for future city districts’ energy systems and the development of a co-simulation environment in order to demonstrate the benefits of the use of the developed EMS in comparison to a conventional control strategy. The co-simulation is implemented with the aid of the co-simulation platform Building Controls Virtual Test Bed (BCVTB) and consists of the following parts: a non-linear, thermoelectric model and a control block containing either the conventional control strategy or the EMS. The thermoelectric model is built up using the well-established simulation tools TRNSYS and IDA-ICE, simulating the energy hub of the city district and the districts’ buildings, respectively. The control block is simulated using MATLAB, where IBM ILOG CPLEX is used for solving the resulting mixed-integer linear program (MILP) of the EMS. Finally, an economic model for financial (and ecological) assessment of the operation is simulated with the aid of the software package Dymola. To put the developed EMS and the co-simulation into practise a case study based on a new city district in Graz, Austria, which is currently in the planning stage, is carried out. The integration of the responsible planners and investors in the modelling process guarantees the models’ practical applicability. In the case study the performance of the originally planned conventional control strategy is compared with the performance of the developed EMS using annual simulations with a simulation time step of 1 minute, and a 24 hour prediction horizon and a 15 minute time step for the EMS. For a more robust and realistic comparison both control strategies are simulated for different scenarios considering current and future (2060) climate conditions, medium and high energy demands (load), ideal and real load prediction methods and varying import prices for electricity from the electricity grid. The results show that the use of the developed EMS strategy results in reduced annual total costs (considering operational and investment costs of additionally suggested distributed energy resources) in comparison to the conventional control strategy. Furthermore, the annual CO2-emissions could be reduced by increasing the self-consumption of the installed (renewable) energy resources and thus decreasing the necessary energy imports from the electricity and the heating grid.


Conference contributions | 2019

Co-Simulation of an Energy Management System for Future City District Energy Systems (Presentation)

Moser AGC, Muschick D, Gölles M, Lerch W, Schranzhofer H, Nageler PJ et al. Co-Simulation of an Energy Management System for Future City District Energy Systems. International Conference on Innovative Applied Energy. 2019. (Oral presentation, 15.03.2019.)

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Slides of the talk "Co-Simulation of an Energy Management System for Future City District Energy Systems"


Scientific Journals | 2019

Cultivation of the microalga Eustigmatos magnus in different photobioreactor geometries and subsequent anaerobic digestion of pre-treated biomass

Gruber-Brunhumer MR, Schöberl A, Zohar E, Koenigsberger S, Bochmann G, Uher B, Lang I, Schagerl M, Fuchs W, Drosg B. Cultivation of the microalga Eustigmatos magnus in different photobioreactor geometries and subsequent anaerobic digestion of pre-treated biomass. Biomass and Bioenergy 2019.105303.

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Microalgal biomass as a feedstock for biogas production is linked to the parameters biomass productivity and biogas yield. Besides an easy-to-use strain for anaerobic digestion, the photobioreactor (PBR) design is important. A microalgae strain selection revealed Eustigmatos magnus (SAG 36.89) as the most promising strain yielding an average of 100 mg total suspended solids (TSS) L−1 day−1. The strain was tested in cost-effective sleevebag-PBR-systems of 10 cm, 20 cm and 30 cm diameter facing the light from the front or laterally. Highest mean productivity on a volumetric basis was measured in PBRs with the lowest diameter (104 and 117 mg L−1 day−1. The highest productivity per m−2 was achieved in 10 cm PBRs with front light configuration (9.35 g TSS m−2 day−1). The lateral light configuration of 10 cm PBRs had positive aspects such as the lowest mean water demand to produce 1 kg TSS (481 L−1 kg−1) and the lowest mean energy demand for medium separation of 1 kg TSS (106 Wh). The concentrated microalgal biomass was then subjected to ultrasonication and thermal pre-treatment (90 °C and 120 °C) and tested in BMP tests. Mesophilic anaerobic mono-digestion of untreated microalgae biomass led to a methane (CH4) yield of 343 L−1 kg−1 volatile solids (VS). Thermal pre-treatment at 120 °C resulted in significantly increased CH4 yields of 430 L−1 kg−1 VS. As thermal pre-treatment can be easily installed nearby a biogas plant it could be an interesting option for AD of microalgal biomass with only little investment.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Double-cropping systems based on rye, maize and sorghum: Impact of variety and harvesting time on biomass and biogas yield

Wannasek L, Ortner M, Kaul HP, Amon B, Amon T. Double-cropping systems based on rye, maize and sorghum: Impact of variety and harvesting time on biomass and biogas yield. European Journal of Agronomy 2019.110:125934

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Climate change affects the frequency and intensity of extreme weather, the results of which include production losses and climate-induced crop productivity fluctuations.

Double-cropping systems (DCSs) have been suggested as a way to increase biomass-production while simultaneously delivering environmental benefits. In a three-year field-test, two DCSs based on maize and sorghum as the main crop and rye as the preceding winter crop were compared with each other and compared with 2 single-cropping systems (SCSs) of maize or sorghum; there were comparisons of growth dynamics, optimal harvesting and growing time as well as biomass and methane yield. In addition, the impact of variety and harvest time on the winter rye optimal biomass yield was studied.

The experiments clearly showed the superiority of the DCS over the SCS. Within the DCS, the rye/sorghum combination achieved significantly higher biomass yields compared to those of the rye/maize combination. The highest dry matter biomass yield was achieved during year 1 at 27.5 ± 2.4 t∙ha−1, during which winter rye contributed 8.3 ± 0.7 t∙ha−1 and sorghum contributed 19.2 ± 1.8 t∙ha−1. At the experimental location, which is influenced by a Pannonia climate (hot and dry), the rye/sorghum DCS was able to obtain average methane yields per hectare, 9300 m3, whereas the rye/maize combination reached 7400 m3. In contrast, the rye, maize and sorghum SCSs achieved methane yields of 4800, 6100 and 6500 m3 ha−1, respectively. The study revealed that the winter rye and sorghum DCS is a promising strategy to counteract climate change and thus guarantee crop yield stability.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Effects of partial maize silage substitution with microalgae on viscosity and biogas yields in continuous AD trials

Gruber-Brunhumer MR, Montgomery LFR, Nussbaumer M, Schoepp T, Zohar E, Muccio M, Ludwig I, Bochmann G, Fuchs W, Drosg B. Effects of partial maize silage substitution with microalgae on viscosity and biogas yields in continuous AD trials. Journal of Biotechnology 2019;295:80-89.

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The microalga Acutodesmus obliquus was investigated as a feedstock in semi-continuously fed anaerobic digestion trials, where A. obliquus was co-digested with pig slurry and maize silage. Maize silage was substituted by both 10% and 20% untreated, and 20% ultrasonicated microalgae biomass on a VS (volatile solids) basis. The substitution of maize silage with 20% of either ultrasonicated and untreated microalgae led to significantly lower biogas yields, i.e., 560 dm³ kg−1 VScorr in the reference compared to 516 and 509 dm³ kg-1VScorr for untreated and ultrasonicated microalgae substitution. Further, the viscosities in the different reactors were measured at an OLR of 3.5 g VS dm-3 d-1. However, all treatments with microalgae resulted in significantly lower viscosities. While the mean viscosity reached 0.503 Pa s in the reference reactor, mean viscosities were 53% lower in reactors where maize was substituted by 20% microalgae, i.e. 0.239 Pa s, at a constant rotation speed of 30 rpm. Reactors where maize was substituted by 20% ultrasonicated microalgae had a 32% lower viscosity, for 10% microalgae substitution a decrease of 8% was measured. Decreased viscosities have beneficial effect on the bioprocess and the economy in biogas plants. Nonetheless, with regard to other parameters, no positive effect on biogas yields by partial substitution with microalgae biomass was found. The application of microalgae may be an interesting option in anaerobic digestion when fibrous or lignocellulosic substances lead to high viscosities of the digested slurries. High production costs remain the bottleneck for making microalgae an interesting feedstock.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Efficient Multi-Year Economic Energy Planning in Microgrids

Pecenak Z, Stadler M, Fahy K, Efficient Multi-Year Economic Energy Planning in Microgrids. Applied Energy 2019;225.

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With energy systems, the problem of economic planning is decisive in the design of a low carbon and resilient future grid. Although several tools to solve the problem already exist in literature and industry, most tools only consider a single “typical year” while providing investment decisions that last around a quarter of a century. In this paper, we introduce why such an approach is limited and derive two approaches to correct this. The first approach, the Forward-Looking model, assumes perfect knowledge and makes investment decisions based on the full planning horizon. The second novel approach, the Adaptive method, solves the optimization problem in single year iterations, making incremental investment decisions that are dependant on previous years, with only knowledge of the current year. Comparing the two approaches on a realistic microgrid, we find little difference in investment decisions (maximum 21% difference in total cost over 20 years), but large differences in optimization time (up to 12000% time difference). We close the paper by discussing implications of forecasting errors on the microgrid planning process, concluding that the Adaptive approach is a suitable choice.


Conference Papers | 2019

Evaluation of the Operational Behaviour of Fixed-bed Biomass Gasifiers - A Novel Approach for Steady-state Analysis

Hollenstein C, Zemann C, Antolini D, Patuzzi F, Martini S, Baratieri M, Gölles M. Evaluation of the Operational Behaviour of Fixed-bed Biomass Gasifiers - A Novel Approach for Steady-state Analysis. Proceedings of the 27th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition, Vols. 27-30 May 2019, pp. 849-860, 2019.

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Assessing the operational behaviour of biomass gasification systems is a crucial basis for further improvements in terms of operational behaviour and robustness in order to increase the technologies’ operational and economic viability. However, in most fixed-bed biomass gasification systems not all parameters required for the assessment can be measured directly. Typically, unknown parameters are determined by using as many balance equations as parameters have to be determined neglecting the additional information provided by other available but not chosen balance equations. Thus, these approaches do not incorporate all measurement data available resulting in a lack of reliability in their results. A detailed analysis of these approaches emphasises that even small deviations in the measurement data can lead to significant deviations in the calculated parameters, demonstrating that individual choices of equations can be highly sensitive regarding measurement uncertainties.

Therefore, an adjusted weighted least squares approach is developed utilizing an overdetermined system of equations incorporating all balance equations simultaneously. Thus, all measurement data available is taken into account, minimizing the influences of measurement uncertainties on the determined parameters. A comprehensive analysis shows that this approach is less sensitive to measurement uncertainties, allowing for a more reliable and accurate assessment of fixed-bed biomass gasifiers.

Keywords: fixed-bed, gasification, mass balance, performance assessment


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

Experimental investigation on biomass shrinking and swelling behaviour: Particles pyrolysis and wood logs combustion

Caposciutti G, Almuina-Villar H, Dieguez-Alonso A, Gruber T, Kelz J, Desideri U, Hochenauer C, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Experimental investigation on biomass shrinking and swelling behaviour: Particles pyrolysis and wood logs combustion. Biomass and Bioenergy 2019;123:1-13.

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Biomass is a suitable energy source to reduce the carbon footprint and increase the use of renewable energy. However, the biomass exploitation is still slowed by many technical issues. In most practical applications, such as gasification or combustion devices, it is important to predict the fuel physical behavior in order to determine the emissions and heat release profile as well as for modeling and design purposes. Within this paper, the study of the dimensional evolution of a biomass fuel (beech wood) in pyrolysis and combustion processes were carried out with the use of the image analysis tool. Sizes from 15 mm to 300 mm characteristic length range were employed in the experiments and the collected data were related to the mass loss and temperature evolution of the biomass particle. It was found that for all the fuel sizes employed a similar volume reduction (60%–66%) was obtained at the end of pyrolysis. However, for the small particles with minor intra-particle gradients shrinkage took place mainly at the end of conversion, while for bigger particles the size variation patter was more linear. Furthermore, swelling was detected in the pyrolysis experiments, and it was higher for a bigger particle size, while cracking and fragmentation phenomena was observed for large wood logs combustion in the stove.


Scientific Journals | 2019

High Utilization of Humidified Ammonia and Methane in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: An Experimental Study of Performance and Stability

Stöckl B, Preininger M, Subotic V, Gaber C, Seidl M, Sommersacher P, Schröttner H, Hochenauer C. High Utilization of Humidified Ammonia and Methane in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: An Experimental Study of Performance and Stability. Journal of The Electrochemical Society 2019.166:F774-F783.

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Wastewater contains high amounts of unused energy in the form of dissolved ammonia, which can easily be converted into gaseous humidified ammonia via membrane distillation, thus providing a potential fuel for solid oxide fuel cells. This study presents comprehensive investigations of the use of humidified ammonia as the primary fuel component in high-fuel utilization conditions. For these investigations, large planar anode- and electrolyte-supported solid oxide single cells were operated at the respective appropriate temperatures, 800°C and 850°C. Fueled with ammonia, both cells exhibited excellent ammonia conversion ( > 99.5%) in addition to excellent performance output and fuel utilization. In 100 h stability tests performed at 80% fuel utilization, the cells exhibited stable performance, despite scanning electron microscopy analyzes revealing partial impairments to the nickel parts of both cells due to the formation and subsequent decomposition of nickel nitride. This study also demonstrates that methane is a perfect additional fuel component for humidified ammonia streams, as steam supports the internal reforming of methane. Alternating and direct current as well as electrochemical impedance measurements with a variety of ammonia/steam/methane/nitrogen fuel mixtures were used to evaluate the performance potential of the cells, and proved their stability over 48 h in highly polarized conditions.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Implementation and long term experiences with a continuous hygienisation process in food industry – A case study

Wöss D, Ortner M, Mensik J, Kirchmayr R, Schumergruber A, Pröll T. Implementation and long term experiences with a continuous hygienisation process in food industry – A case study. Chemical Engineering and Processing - Process Intensification 2019;137:100-107.

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A three tonne/hour batch-type hygienisation process for animal waste was replaced by a fully continuous process including heat integration. The plant is embedded into a pig abattoir including an anaerobic digestion (biogas) plant and gas-engine-based combined heat and power (CHP) production. Pre-heating is done in a series of four tube bundle apparatuses with heat transferred from the hot treated animal waste leaving the hygienisation plant. A closed water loop is used for heat transfer in this heat recovery arrangement. After pre-heating, the feed passes a second series of four tube bundles operated with heat from the biogas CHP plant in order to meet a target temperature of 72 °C at the inlet of the continuous hygienisation section. The material leaving the tube section is finally cooled in a series of four tube bundles and provides heat for pre-heating the feed before it is directed into the biogas plant. The process was started up in 2011 and monitoring results are be presented from 2011 to 2016. With the implementation of the continuous process, energy consumption of the hygienisation step was reduced by 64% for thermal and by 69% for electric energy.


Conference Papers | 2019

Increased economic efficiency of dual fluidized bed plants via model-based control

Nigitz T, Gölles M, Aichernig C, Schneider S, Hofbauer H, Horn M. Increased economic efficiency of dual fluidized bed plants via model-based control. In 27th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition. 2019. p. 533 - 538 https://doi.org/10.5071/27thEUBCE2019-2BO.6.5

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Sustainable technologies can hardly compete with fossil-based technologies in terms of economic efficiency. One sustainable technology with special relevance due to its wide range of application and industrial readiness is biomass gasification using a dual fluidized bed (DFB). The economic challenges of a DFB gasification plant are addressed without constructional measures by adapting a current control strategy. This paper proposes a model-based control strategy aiming for increased economic efficiency of a DFB gasification plant considering exemplarily the “HGA Senden” in Ulm, Germany. A process analysis reveals high potential for improvement at the current control strategy for the synchronization of product gas production and utilization. A significant surplus of product gas is burned in an auxiliary boiler just for synchronization, and regular manual adjustments by the plant operators at the fuel feed are necessary. The model-based control strategy synchronizes by actuating the auxiliary boiler and the fuel feed simultaneously. The model-based control strategy is experimentally validated for over one month at the “HGA Senden” proofing a significant increase in economic efficiency. So, the economic efficiency of this technology for the sustainable production of energy and products is increased by model-based control.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Interrelation of Volatile Organic Compounds and Sensory Properties of Alternative and Torrefied Wood Pellets

Poellinger-Zierler B, Sedlmayer I, Reinisch C, Hofbauer H, Schmidl C, Kolb LP, Wopienka E, Leitner E, Siegmund B. Interrelation of Volatile Organic Compounds and Sensory Properties of Alternative and Torrefied Wood Pellets. energy & fuels 2019.33:5270-5281.

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The increasing demand for wood pellets on the market, which is caused by their excellent combustion properties, inspires the production as well as the utilization of alternative biomass pellets as fuel. However, the emission of volatile organic compounds gives pellet materials a distinct odor or off-odor, which is directly perceived by the end user. Thus, there is an urgent need for knowledge about the emitted volatile organic compounds and their potential formation pathways as well as their contributions to odor properties of the pellets. In this study, pellets made of biomass energy crops (i.e., straw or miscanthus), byproducts from the food industry (i.e., rapeseed, grapevine, or DDGS (dried distillers grains with solubles from beer production)), or eucalyptus, as well as torrefied pinewood and torrefied sprucewood were investigated with respect to the emitted volatile compounds and their possible impact on the pellet odor. Headspace solid-phase microextraction in combination with gas chromatography–mass spectrometry was used to enrich, separate, and identify the compounds. Techniques used in sensory science were applied to obtain information about the odor properties of the samples. A total of 59 volatile compounds (acids, aldehydes and ketones, alcohols, terpenes, heterocyclic compounds, and phenolic compounds) were identified with different compound ratios in the investigated materials. The use of multivariate statistical data analysis provided deep insight into product–compound interrelation. For pellets produced from bioenergy crops, as well as from byproducts from the food industry, the sensory properties of the pellets reflected the odor properties of the raw material. With respect to the volatiles from torrefied pellets, those volatiles that are formed during the torrefaction procedure dominate the odor of the torrefied pellets covering the genuine odor of the utilized wood. The results of this work serve as a substantiated basis for future production of pellets from alternative raw materials.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Layer formation mechanism of K-feldspar in bubbling fluidized bed combustion of phosphorus-lean and phosphorus-rich residual biomass.

Wagner K, Häggström G, Skoglund N, Priscak J, Kuba M, Öhman M, Hofbauer H. Layer formation mechanism of K-feldspar in bubbling fluidized bed combustion of phosphorus-lean and phosphorus-rich residual biomass. Applied Energy 2019.248:545-554.

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The use of phosphorus-rich fuels in fluidized bed combustion is one probable way to support both heat and power production and phosphorus recovery. Ash is accumulated in the bed during combustion and interacts with the bed material to form layers and/or agglomerates, possibly removing phosphorus from the bed ash fraction. To further deepen the knowledge about the difference in the mechanisms behind the ash chemistry of phosphorus-lean and phosphorus-rich fuels, experiments in a 5 kW bench-scale-fluidized bed test-rig with K-feldspar as the bed material were conducted with bark, wheat straw, chicken manure, and chicken manure admixtures to bark and straw. Bed material samples were collected and studied for layer formation and agglomeration phenomena by scanning electron microscopy combined with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry. The admixture of phosphorus-rich chicken manure to bark changed the layer formation mechanism, shifting the chemistry to the formation of phosphates rather than silicates. The admixture of chicken manure to straw reduced the ash melting and agglomeration risk, making it possible to increase the time until defluidization of the fluidized bed occurred. The results also highlight that an increased ash content does not necessarily lead to more ash melting related problems if the ash melting temperature is high enough.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

Layer Formation on Feldspar Bed Particles during Indirect Gasification of Wood Part 1: K-Feldspar

Faust R, Hannl T K, Berdugo Vilches T, Kuba M, Öhmann M, Seemann M C, Knutsson P Layer Formation on Feldspar Bed Particles during Indirect Gasification of Wood Part 1: K-Feldspar.Energy&Fuels 2019.33:8:7321-7332

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The choice of bed material for biomass gasification plays a crucial role for the overall efficiency of the process. Olivine is the material conventionally used for biomass gasification due to the observed activity of olivine toward cracking of unwanted tars. Despite its catalytic activity, olivine contains high levels of chromium, which complicates the deposition of used bed material. Feldspar has shown the same activity as olivine when used as a bed material in biomass gasification. As opposed to olivine, feldspar does not contain environmentally hazardous compounds, which makes it a preferred alternative for further applications. The interaction of bed material and ash heavily influences the properties of the bed material. In the present study interactions between feldspar and main ash compounds of woody biomass in an indirect gasification system were investigated. Bed material samples were collected at different time intervals and analyzed with SEM-EDS and XRD. The obtained analysis results were then compared to thermodynamic models. The performed study was divided in two parts: in part 1 (the present paper), K-rich feldspar was investigated, whereas Na-rich feldspar is presented in part 2 of the study (DOI: 10.1021/acs.energyfuels.9b01291). From the material analysis performed, it can be seen that, as a result of the bed materials’ interactions with the formed ash compounds, the latter were first deposited on the surface of the K-feldspar particles and later resulted in the formation of Ca- and Mg-rich layers. The Ca enriched in the layers further reacted with the feldspar, which led to its diffusion into the particles and the formation of CaSiO3 and KAlSiO4. Contrary to Ca, Mg did not react with the feldspar and remained on the surface of the particles, where it was found as Mg- or Ca-Mg-silicates. As a result of the described interactions, layer separation was noted after 51 h with an outer Mg-rich layer and an inner Ca-rich layer. Due to the development of the Ca- and Mg-rich layers and the bed material–ash interactions, crack formation was observed on the particles’ surfaces.


Scientific Journals | 2019

Layer Formation on Feldspar Bed Particles during Indirect Gasification of Wood Part 2: Na-Feldspar

Hannl T K, Faust R, Kuba m, Knutsson p, Berdugo Vilches T, Seemann m C, Öhman M. Layer Formation on Feldspar Bed Particles during Indirect Gasification of Wood Part 2: Na-Feldspar. Energy & Fuels 2019.33:8:7333-7346.

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Selecting a suitable bed material for the thermochemical conversion of a specific feedstock in a fluidized bed system requires identification of the characteristics of potential bed materials. An essential part of these characteristics is the interaction of the bed material with feedstock ash in a fluidized bed, which leads to layer formation and morphology changes. For this purpose, the interaction of feldspar bed material with the main ash-forming elements in wood ash (Ca, K, Mg, Si) in an indirect gasification system was analyzed using SEM-EDS, XRD, and thermodynamic modeling. In part 1 of this work (DOI: 10.1021/acs.energyfuels.9b01291), the layer formation on K-feldspar dominated by Ca reaction and ash deposition was investigated. The aim of this second part of the work was to determine the time-dependent layer formation on Na-feldspar and compare the results with the findings for K-feldspar. Interaction of Na-feldspar with ash-derived elements resulted in different layers on Na-feldspar: K reaction layers, where K replaced Na and Si shares decreased; Ca reaction layers, where Ca enriched and reacted with the Na-feldspar; and ash deposition layers, where wood ash elements accumulated on the surface. Ca reaction layers were formed first and became continuous on the surface before K reaction layers and ash deposition layers were detected. Cracks and crack layer formation in the Na-feldspar particles were found after several days of operation. The layer compositions and growth rates indicate that the diffusion of Ca and K plays an essential role in the formation of Ca reaction and K reaction layers. The reaction with Ca and the crack formation coincide with the interaction previously found for quartz and K-feldspar. In contrast to K-feldspar, Na-feldspar showed high potential for reaction with K. The findings indicate that the reaction of Na-feldspar with ash-derived K makes Na-feldspar a less stable bed material than K-feldspar during the thermochemical conversion of K-rich feedstocks in a fluidized bed system.


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