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Energies 2016, 9(10), 838; doi:10.3390/en9100838

The BioSCWG Project: Understanding the Trade-Offs in the Process and Thermal Design of Hydrogen and Synthetic Natural Gas Production

1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, School of Engineering, Aalto University, Aalto FI-00076, Finland
2
Department of Chemical Engineering, Åbo Akademi University, Turku 20500, Finland
3
Department of Chemical Engineering, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo 05508-010, Brazil
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Thomas E. Amidon
Received: 29 August 2016 / Accepted: 29 September 2016 / Published: 18 October 2016
(This article belongs to the Collection Bioenergy and Biofuel)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1943 KB, uploaded 18 October 2016]   |  

Abstract

This article presents a summary of the main findings from a collaborative research project between Aalto University in Finland and partner universities. A comparative process synthesis, modelling and thermal assessment was conducted for the production of Bio-synthetic natural gas (SNG) and hydrogen from supercritical water refining of a lipid extracted algae feedstock integrated with onsite heat and power generation. The developed reactor models for product gas composition, yield and thermal demand were validated and showed conformity with reported experimental results, and the balance of plant units were designed based on established technologies or state-of-the-art pilot operations. The poly-generative cases illustrated the thermo-chemical constraints and design trade-offs presented by key process parameters such as plant organic throughput, supercritical water refining temperature, nature of desirable coproducts, downstream indirect production and heat recovery scenarios. The evaluated cases favoring hydrogen production at 5 wt. % solid content and 600 °C conversion temperature allowed higher gross syngas and CHP production. However, mainly due to the higher utility demands the net syngas production remained lower compared to the cases favoring BioSNG production. The latter case, at 450 °C reactor temperature, 18 wt. % solid content and presence of downstream indirect production recorded 66.5%, 66.2% and 57.2% energetic, fuel-equivalent and exergetic efficiencies respectively. View Full-Text
Keywords: supercritical water gasification; lipid extracted algae; polygeneration; synthetic natural gas (SNG); hydrogen; thermodynamic assessment supercritical water gasification; lipid extracted algae; polygeneration; synthetic natural gas (SNG); hydrogen; thermodynamic assessment
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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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Magdeldin, M.; Kohl, T.; De Blasio, C.; Järvinen, M.; Won Park, S.; Giudici, R. The BioSCWG Project: Understanding the Trade-Offs in the Process and Thermal Design of Hydrogen and Synthetic Natural Gas Production. Energies 2016, 9, 838.

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