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Energies 2015, 8(6), 5577-5597; doi:10.3390/en8065577

Analyzing and Comparing Biomass Feedstock Supply Systems in China: Corn Stover and Sweet Sorghum Case Studies

1
College of Light Industry and Textiles, Qiqihar University, Qiqihar 161006, Heilongjiang, China
2
Biomass Logistics Department, National Energy R&D Center for Non-food Biomass, Beijing 100193, China
3
Biofuels & Renewable Energy Technologies, Idaho National Laboratory, PO Box 1625, Idaho Falls, ID 83415-2210, USA
4
Environment and Nuclear Business Group, CH2M Hill Companies Ltd., 1000 NE Circle Blvd Suite 10350, Corvallis, OR 97330, USA
5
College of Agronomy and Biotechnology, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Robert Lundmark
Received: 7 April 2015 / Revised: 12 May 2015 / Accepted: 21 May 2015 / Published: 11 June 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1932 KB, uploaded 11 June 2015]   |  

Abstract

This paper analyzes the rural Chinese biomass supply system and models supply chain operations according to U.S. concepts of logistical unit operations: harvest and collection, storage, transportation, preprocessing, and handling and queuing. In this paper, we quantify the logistics cost of corn stover and sweet sorghum in China under different scenarios. We analyze three scenarios of corn stover logistics from northeast China and three scenarios of sweet sorghum stalks logistics from Inner Mongolia in China. The case study estimates that the logistics cost of corn stover and sweet sorghum stalk to be $52.95/dry metric ton and $52.64/dry metric ton, respectively, for the current labor-based biomass logistics system. However, if the feedstock logistics operation is mechanized, the cost of corn stover and sweet sorghum stalk decreases to $36.01/dry metric ton and $35.76/dry metric ton, respectively. The study also includes a sensitivity analysis to identify the cost factors that cause logistics cost variation. Results of the sensitivity analysis show that labor price has the most influence on the logistics cost of corn stover and sweet sorghum stalk, with a variation of $6 to $12/dry metric ton. View Full-Text
Keywords: biomass; logistics system; modeling; corn stover; sweet sorghum stalks biomass; logistics system; modeling; corn stover; sweet sorghum stalks
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Ren, L.; Cafferty, K.; Roni, M.; Jacobson, J.; Xie, G.; Ovard, L.; Wright, C. Analyzing and Comparing Biomass Feedstock Supply Systems in China: Corn Stover and Sweet Sorghum Case Studies. Energies 2015, 8, 5577-5597.

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