Cofiring high ratios of biomass with coal

Dr Rohan Fernando
Dr Rohan Fernando presents the findings of his latest report on biomass
May 9 2012
28 mins
Cofiring high ratios of biomass with coal
cofiring biomass coal
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Energy Management

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  • Coal and gas competition in power generation in Asia Mar 18 2015 12:00 pm UTC 45 mins
    Competition between coal and natural gas for power generation has been observed to occur in North America and Europe in recent years, where the costs of the two fuels have played a key role in determining the relative competitiveness. It is perceived that such a competition could also happen in Asian countries. More importantly, as these countries are expanding their generation capacity to meet growing electricity demand, a key question is raised of whether coal or gas power plants should be built with priority. This webinar is based on a recent report published by IEA CCC, where the authors investigate nine Asian countries to seek to understand the mechanisms that drive the competition between coal and gas for power generation.
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    Biomass could have an important role in the strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from large coal plants. Amongst the plethora of different biomasses, wood pellets have emerged as one of the most successful and fast growing internationally traded commodities. Wood (and straw) pellets offer a more energy dense and transportable alternative to the traditional wood chip, a product most commonly associated with the paper and pulp industry.

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    However, extending cofiring at low rates (5-10%) to the world’s coal-fired fleet will increase demand for wood pellets significantly. Meeting this demand will offer opportunities and challenges for the entire biomass supply chain, not least forest resources. This presentation accompanies a report by the IEA Clean Coal Centre to review the current understanding of world biomass resources using published forestry data from the UN Forestry and Agricultural Organization (FAO). From these data, the author attempts to identify a global and regional resource figure for wood in the form of residues and waste by-products that arise from the forestry industry; and discusses the broad issues that affect forest resources worldwide.
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    Coal-fired power plants are increasingly required to balance power grids by compensating for the variable electricity supply from renewable energy sources. For this, high flexibility is needed, in terms of possessing resilience to frequent start-ups, meeting major and rapid load changes, and providing frequency control duties. This report reviews the means available and under development for achieving the flexibility. Potential damage mechanisms are well known, and the necessary flexibility can be achieved with acceptable impacts on component life, efficiency and emissions. Designs are being developed to enable flexibility in future plants.
  • Blending of coals to meet power station requirements Recorded: Jul 16 2014 43 mins
    Blending of imported and domestic coal is becoming more important. Until recently, coal blending in power stations was adopted mainly to reduce the cost of generation and increase the use of indigenous or more readily available coal. Low-grade (high ash) coal can be mixed with higher grade (imported) coal without deterioration in thermal performance of the boiler, thus reducing the cost of generation. As coal markets change, new reasons for coal blending are becoming apparent. As indigenous coals become less available, of lower quality or more expensive to mine in some regions, blending of imported coals becomes necessary. It can be challenging to ensure that the resulting blend will maintain plant output without damaging the boiler.
    In some cases coal blending is used as a form of pollution control, such as the combination of inexpensive high sulphur coals with more costly low sulphur coals to ensure compliance with sulphur emission limits. It is even possible to blend different coal types to maximise mercury emission reduction.
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    In this webinar Lesley discusses the different reasons and priorities for coal blending. She summarises the methods of coal blending, from coal characterisation though to mixing and storage methods, including some case studies of challenging situations.
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    Turkey has one of the world’s fastest growing economies. Rapid economic expansion, rising population, and growing industrialisation have triggered a general increase in energy demand. Over the next ten years energy demand is expected to double. In order to meet this, significant investment in the energy sector will be required.

    Turkey's indigenous energy resources are limited almost exclusively to lignite and smaller amounts of hard coal, so there is a heavy
    dependence on imported sources of energy. More than 90% of Turkey’s oil and 98% of its natural gas is imported, as is much of the hard coal consumed, as a considerable cost. The government aims to reduce this,
    partly through the greater use of domestic lignite, widely available in many parts of the country. Thus, the government has a ‘coal strategy’ and has introduced incentives to encourage the its greater utilisation. Many new power generation projects are in the pipeline, some fired on ligniteand others that will rely on imported hard coal.

    Many existing state-owned coal-fired power assets (and coalfields) are in the process of being transferred to the private sector. Some power plants require modernising and this is being factored into their selling price. The current coal-based generating fleet comprises plants based on conventional pulverised coal or fluidised bed combustion technology. Some newer projects plan to use supercritical steam conditions and all major power plants will be required to install effective emission control systems.

    The further development and application of a range of clean coal technologies is being pursued by a number of Turkish utilities, technology developers, and universities. There is increasing involvement
    with international projects and, in many cases, growing links with overseas counterparts.
  • Upgrading the efficiency of the world’s coal fleet to reduce CO2 emissions Recorded: May 14 2014 39 mins
    This study examines the role of HELE (high efficiency, low emission) coal-fired power plant in helping to meet the goal of reduced carbon dioxide emissions by setting out an overview of the prospects for the role of HELE technologies in a number of major coal user countries. Ten countries have been selected for study and are (in alphabetical order); Australia, China, Germany, India, Japan, Poland, Russia, South Africa, South Korea and the USA. The target countries have differing coal-plant fleet ages and efficiencies, and different local conditions and policies which impact on the scope for HELE implementation.
    The profile of the coal fleet for each country has been calculated to meet future electricity demand under three scenarios with progressively greater replacement of lower efficiency capacity with HELE technology, and the consequent emissions of carbon dioxide and costs of implementation determined. The results are discussed in terms of potential carbon dioxide savings and the prospects for adopting a HELE upgrade pathway in the context of current energy policy.
  • Developments in oxyfiring combustion Recorded: Apr 24 2014 40 mins
    First Asia-Pacific webinar from the IEA CCC. Presented by Toby Lockwood and Kyle Nicol.
  • High temperature steels in pulverised coal technology Recorded: Mar 19 2014 27 mins
    Pulverised coal combustion (PCC) power plant with supercritical (SC) steam parameters have been operational for over forty years and ultra-supercrital (USC) PCC plant have been operational for just over twenty years. This significant amount of operating experience is valuable regarding the performance of high temperatures steels. For example 9-12% chromium martensitic steels have had problems with cracking and some have not been as strong as they were projected to be. Additionally, PCC power plant have been operated outside of design parameters, such as severe cyclic operation, which has resulted in unforeseen problems for high temperature steels. This webinar reviews the performance, problems, solutions and research efforts for high temperature steels used in SC and USC technology.
  • Sustainability of biomass for cofiring Recorded: Feb 12 2014 31 mins
    There are many items to include when considering the sustainability of biomass for cofiring, and some of them are hard to quantify. The focus of this webinar is on the greenhouse gas emission aspects of sustainability. The reduction of greenhouse gas emissions achieved by substituting biomass for coal depends on a number of factors such as the nature of the fossil fuel reference system, the source of the biomass, and how it is produced. Relevant issues in biomass production include the energy balance, the greenhouse gas balance, land use change, non-CO2 greenhouse gas emission from soils, changes to soil organic carbon, and the timing of emissions and removal of CO2 which relates to the scale of biomass production. Certification of sustainable biomass is slow to emerge at the national and international level, so various organisations are developing and using their own standards for sustainable production. The EU does not yet have sustainability standards for solid biomass, but the UK and Belgium have developed their own.
  • Challenges and opportunities for coal gasification in developing countries Recorded: Jan 8 2014 44 mins
    Coal gasification for chemicals, gaseous and liquid fuels production can fulfil an important strategic need in those developing countries where coal is the primary fuel source and oil and gas energy security is an issue. At the same time, the establishment of major projects in such countries can be problematical for a number of technical and economic reasons, although it is encouraging that some projects appear to be moving forward. There are two developing countries where coal conversion projects to produce chemicals, gaseous and liquid fuels have been taken forward strongly. The first is South Africa, which established the world’s only commercial-scale coal-to-liquids and coal-tochemicals facilities at Secunda and Sasolburg respectively. The other is China, where there is a major gasification-based coal conversion development and deployment programme that is set to become a significant, large-scale commercial element in the nation’s energy development plans. This will provide further major opportunities for the deployment of large-scale coal gasification technologies, various syngas conversion units and catalysts for the subsequent production of the required products. The role of China is likely to be critical in the dissemination of such technologies to other developing countries as it can not only provide the technical expertise but also financially underpin such projects, including the associated infrastructure needs.
  • Management of coal combustion wastes Recorded: Dec 11 2013 40 mins
    Xing Zhang presents the results of her research
  • Coal prospects in Southern Africa Recorded: Nov 13 2013 29 mins
    Paul Baruya presents the findings of his recent research
  • Status of advanced ultrasupercritical pulverised coal technology Recorded: Oct 9 2013 21 mins
    Kyle Nicol presents the findings of his latest report
  • Techno-economic analysis of PC versus CFB combustion technology Recorded: Sep 4 2013 30 mins
    Toby Lockwood presents the results of his latest research
  • Co-utilisation of renewable energy with coal Recorded: Aug 21 2013 33 mins
    Dr Stephen Mills presents the findings of his latest report
IEA Clean Coal Centre
IEA Clean Coal Centre

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  • Title: Cofiring high ratios of biomass with coal
  • Live at: May 9 2012 11:00 am
  • Presented by: Dr Rohan Fernando
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