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The current analysis investigates the opportunity to produce BIO-FUEL from solid wet Bio-Mass waste (e.g. forestry, sawmill, agriculture, etc) either to be fed into a boiler - steam turbine system to generate electricity. Thus, substituting fossil fuels, converting solid wet Bio-Mass to fuel for biopower has several advantages, including ease of storage and longer temporal stability if alkali species are removed. BIO-FUEL also has a bulk density and energy density much greater than solid Bio-Mass.

The production of BIO-FUEL is conducted through the process of pyrolysis. Pyrolysis of Bio- Mass takes two forms, slow pyrolysis as traditionally applied for charcoal making, or fast pyrolysis (flash pyrolysis), which mainly produces a combustible liquid fuel as well as Bio-Gas which can substitute for diesel or act as a chemical feedstock.

The Hermal Group expects the primary source of fuel for the pyrolysis system to be a wood waste by-product from the harvesting operation within plantation forests, their chipping processes, as well as sawmilling and sustainable wood products manufacturing In this initial phase of commercialisation. This is expected to very quickly become applied to all other forms of Bio-Mass available.

As the BIO-ENERGY plant can be located on-site close to the sustainable resources of Bio-Mass, there is no longer a need for significant transport cost associated with the removal of the wood waste as well as reduced emissions from the transport of the waste.

The current analysis aims to gain a deeper understanding of the financial feasibility of the BIO-ENERGY plant through real-world applications as a retrofit to an existing site with a steam boiler.

To achieve this, a supplement and standalone scenario will be analysed using BIO-FUEL as a fuel input to a boiler – steam turbine system:

Supplement – The displacement of electricity from the NEM will be modelled to demonstrate how a BIO-ENERGY plant can be applied to manufacturing and industrial facilities to reduce their costs dependence on the electricity network. Historical annualised base case to be considered.

Standalone – Electricity generated from the combustion of BIO-FUEL will be modelled to provide dispatchable, peak-load, electricity supply into the NEM. Historical annualised base case to be considered.

In the end, the energy content of the transformation of waste products is critical to the viability of the project. Current findings of this research confirm that the BIO-FUEL provides 20% more density than Brown Coal and is approximately half the density of Thermal Coal.

The future lies with new industries manufacturing Bio-Chemicals from sustainable, renewable Bio-Mass.

There is also an opportunity to capture the CO2 and sell it to carbonated drink manufacturers strategically located.  

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