Publication details

Title A Systems Approach for the Holistic Screening of Second Generation Biorefinery Paths for Energy and Bio-based Products
Document Type Article
Year 2014
Authors Tsakalova, M., Yang, A., Kokossis, A.C.
Source Computer Aided Chemical Engineering, vol.33, p.205-210
Keywords Biorefinery; Optimization; Synthesis
Abstract One of the key challenges in the area of biorefining is to screen over the multiple possibilities and combinations among the numerous bio-based sources, processes and products that form a biorefinery. The methodology proposed in the current paper makes use of the systems technology to deal with the overflow of degrees of freedom originated from different sources of information and different granularities and aspects of the problem (engineering, supply chain, agricultural). The proposed holistic approach is based on the formulation of a generic and modular superstructure comprising common elements of the synthesis involved and tested against the development of an evolving real-life lignocellulosic biorefinery. Building elements include feedstock, processes, blocks of intermediates and final products. Different studies scope the impact on deviating from single-product to multi-product processes, the selection of co-products when a fixed production of a primal product (methane) is considered, implications of variations in market conditions and supplies as well as the significance of the cost for transport in the optimal solution. This study reveals a clear advantage of multi-product plants, essentially pointing to the fact that single-product plants are not feasible. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.
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