How it Works
There are two other technologies for converting biomass-related material into fuel that can be used to generate electrical power.
One process is to capture gas that is emitted naturally from municipal waste landfills as organic matter decomposes. Landfill gas is about 50 percent methane and 50 percent CO2. The gas extracted from the landfills using a series of wells and pipes to collect gas and bring it to a central point where it can be processed and treated.
The second process is called anaerobic digestion. It is a biochemical process; microbes needing oxygen are used to break down animal and food industry waste into inorganic compounds. A principal product of this process is biogas that is 60 to 70 percent methane.
PCR-Energy can help clients choose the right strategy for their biomass or biogas investment, ranging from a simple feasibility study to an all encompassing solution including planning, financing, supplier selection, supply chain and project management, construction, and
Biomass power plants have been in operation for many years, considering that some power plants burn wood or wood products, which is a biomass product. Biomass is defined as the organic matter that was once a living plant or tree.
Biomass power typically involves burning paper mill residue, lumber mill scrap, municipal solid waste and other waste. New technology has made it possible to use corn stalks and wheat straw. Dried animal manure, which typically contains a substantial amount of leftover plant material, can also be used as a feedstock for biomass power plants. Biomass is not a particularly clean source of energy since it involves burning waste products and releases CO2 and other pollution into the air, but it is cleaner than burning fossil fuels.
There are three major technologies for using biomass as a power generation fuel: 1) direct fired, 2) co-fired and 3) gasification. Most biomass plants use a direct-fires system, which means the biomass feedstock is burned in a boiler system to produce high pressure steam that in turn drives a steam turbine to generate electricity. In a co-fired system the biomass material is combined with coal to burn in a power plant. In a gasification system, the biomass is first converted into a flammable gas using heat and steam and the resulting biogas is burned to run the steam turbine and generator system.