Torrefaction integrated assessment
To develop a whole systems overview of the impacts of incorporating torrefaction into bioenergy systems.
SUPERGEN bioenergy work at the University of Leeds has evaluated the possibilities of producing torrefied material from biomass, which should provide a more homogeneous, consistent feedstock, addressing some issues associated with non-uniformity or variability of biomass feedstock. It also provides a material that mills well, incurs less losses/degradation during storage and transit, and is hydrophobic, meaning it can be stored in the open.
This project will develop a whole system overview of the impacts of incorporating torrefaction into bioenergy systems, evaluating the extent to which these benefits can counteract energy requirements and environmental impacts, such as contamination of run-off water or changes in airborne emission levels.
Data from previous work will be used to develop full mass-energy balances for incorporation of torrefaction into selected bioenergy systems, including recovery of chemicals as part of an integrated processing scheme.
Techno-economic analysis and life cycle analysis will be carried out to compare the options of pre-treatment by torrefaction and pre-treatment by pyrolysis on a common basis.
The results will then be used to consider whether there is a rationale for specifically encouraging torrefaction and what relevant policy mechanisms might be used.