Resource efficiency or economy of scale: Biorefinery supply chain configurations for co-gasification of black liquor and pyrolysis liquids

Zetterholm, J., Pettersson, K., Leduc, S., Mesfun, S. ORCID:, Lundgren, J., & Wetterlund, E. (2018). Resource efficiency or economy of scale: Biorefinery supply chain configurations for co-gasification of black liquor and pyrolysis liquids. Applied Energy 230 912-924. 10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.09.018.

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Biorefineries for the production of fuels, chemicals, or materials can be an important contributor to reducing dependence on fossil fuels. The economic performance of the biorefinery supply chain can be increased by, for example, industrial integration to utilise excess heat and products, increasing size to improve economy of scale, and using intermediate upgrading to reduce feedstock transport cost. To enable a large-scale introduction of biorefineries it is important to identify cost efficient supply chain configurations.

This work investigates a lignocellulosic biorefinery concept integrated with forest industry, focusing on how different economic conditions affect the preferred supply chain configurations. The technology investigated is black liquor gasification, with and without the addition of pyrolysis liquids to increase production capacity. Primarily, it analyses trade-offs between high biomass conversion efficiency and economy of scale effects, as well as the selection of centralised vs. decentralised supply chain configurations.

The results show the economic advantage for biomass efficient configurations, when the biorefinery investment is benefited from an alternative investment credit due to the replacement of current capital-intensive equipment at the host industry. However, the investment credit received heavily influenced the cost of the biorefinery and clearly illustrates the benefit for industrial integration to reduce the cost of biorefineries. There is a benefit for a decentralised supply chain configuration under very high biomass competition. However, for lower biomass competition, site-specific conditions will impact the favourability of either centralised or decentralised supply chain configurations.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Biorefinery; Economy of scale; Efficiency; Supply chain; Black liquor; Pyrolysis liquids
Research Programs: Ecosystems Services and Management (ESM)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 13 Sep 2018 06:27
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:30

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