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Assessment of a Biomass Gasification Co-Generation Plant Based on the UCS’s “Principles for Bioenergy Development”

[+] Author Affiliations
Jeffrey H. Morehouse

University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC

Kenneth W. Detwiler

Johnson Controls Incorporated, Charlotte, NC

Paper No. ES2008-54262, pp. 399-404; 6 pages
  • ASME 2008 2nd International Conference on Energy Sustainability collocated with the Heat Transfer, Fluids Engineering, and 3rd Energy Nanotechnology Conferences
  • ASME 2008 2nd International Conference on Energy Sustainability, Volume 1
  • Jacksonville, Florida, USA, August 10–14, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Advanced Energy Systems Division and Solar Energy Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4319-2 | eISBN: 0-7918-3832-3
  • Copyright © 2008 by ASME


An assessment of the University of South Carolina’s (USC) biomass gasification plant, which produces steam and electricity, is made using the five “Guiding Principles” found in the April 2007 update of the Union of Concerned Scientists’ (UCS) Principles for Bioenergy Development document [1]. The UCS’s guiding principles are to... “help guide bioenergy development in a manner that maximizes opportunities and helps address the challenges associated with this renewable resource.” The USC biomass plant is the first commercial biomass gasification plant producing steam and electricity in the USA. It uses bark chips from the pulp wood industry as its fuel source. Gasification of the bark produces syngas which is then oxidized and used as the heat source to generate 60,000 lb/hour (maximum) of steam at 600 psig and 740 F. The steam first passes through a turbine-generator producing 1.5 MW (maximum) of electricity and then is circulated via the campus system at 115 psig and 325 F for heating and hot water use. The plant’s construction, operational conditions, and environmental and economic impacts are examined versus the five UCS guiding principles.

Copyright © 2008 by ASME



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