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Net energy ratio for the production of steam pretreated biomass-based pellets

Shahrukh, Hassan, Oyedun, Adetoyese Olajire, Kumar, Amit, Ghiasi, Bahman, Kumar, Linoj, Sokhansanj, Shahab
Biomass and bioenergy 2015 v.80 pp. 286-297
biomass, drying, energy, feedstocks, models, pelleting, pellets, steam, temperature, uncertainty
A process model was developed to determine the net energy ratio (NER) for both regular and steam-pretreated pellet production from ligno-cellulosic biomass. NER is a ratio of the net energy output to the total net energy input from non-renewable energy source into the system. Scenarios were developed to measure the effect of temperature and level of steam pretreatment on the NER of both production processes. The NER for the base case at 6 kg h−1 is 1.29 and 5.0 for steam-pretreated and regular pellet production respectively. However, at the large scale NER would improve. The major factor for NER is energy for steam and drying unit. The sensitivity analysis for the model shows that the optimum temperature for steam pretreatment is 200 °C with 50% pretreatment (Steam pretreating 50% feed stock, while the rest is undergoing regular pelletization). Uncertainty result for steam pretreated and regular pellet is 1.35 ± 0.09 and 4.52 ± 0.34 respectively.