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Article

Wood Fuel Procurement to Bioenergy Facilities: Analysis of Moisture Content Variability and Optimal Sampling Strategy

1
Department of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy
2
Department of Food Science, University of Copenhagen, Rolighedsvej 26, DK-1958 Frederiksberg, Denmark
3
CNR-IBE (Institute of Bioeconomy of the National Research Council), via Madonna del Piano 10, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Andrea Pizzi, Giuseppe Toscano and Daniele Duca
Processes 2021, 9(2), 359; https://doi.org/10.3390/pr9020359
Received: 28 January 2021 / Revised: 11 February 2021 / Accepted: 13 February 2021 / Published: 15 February 2021
Moisture content is the most relevant quality parameter for wood fuels. Effective and fast determination of moisture of incoming feedstock is essential in the management of bioenergy facilities. The availability of fast and reliable moisture meters based on innovative technologies simplifies this task. However, in Mediterranean conditions the inherent variability of wood fuels calls for a careful sampling strategy if representative results are required while facing acceptable analytic costs. The present study is aimed at measuring the fuel heterogeneity and defining accordingly the appropriate number of samples to be analyzed in order to get reliable moisture-content results. A total of 70 truckloads (about 2270 t of woodchips) were sampled during commercial operations in two different seasons. Five samples were collected from each load and measured with standard method and magnetic resonance gauge. Results show that the variability of moisture content is influenced by mixing of species and storage of biomass. Heterogeneity can vary greatly also within single truckloads, to the point that three samples are needed to achieve about 90% of estimates within the desired precision limits. In the case of larger lots, such as barge or ship loads, 20 samples can provide sufficient precision in most scenarios. View Full-Text
Keywords: sampling; fuel; moisture content; quality; heterogeneity; biomass sampling; fuel; moisture content; quality; heterogeneity; biomass
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MDPI and ACS Style

Leoni, E.; Mancini, M.; Aminti, G.; Picchi, G. Wood Fuel Procurement to Bioenergy Facilities: Analysis of Moisture Content Variability and Optimal Sampling Strategy. Processes 2021, 9, 359. https://doi.org/10.3390/pr9020359

AMA Style

Leoni E, Mancini M, Aminti G, Picchi G. Wood Fuel Procurement to Bioenergy Facilities: Analysis of Moisture Content Variability and Optimal Sampling Strategy. Processes. 2021; 9(2):359. https://doi.org/10.3390/pr9020359

Chicago/Turabian Style

Leoni, Elena, Manuela Mancini, Giovanni Aminti, and Gianni Picchi. 2021. "Wood Fuel Procurement to Bioenergy Facilities: Analysis of Moisture Content Variability and Optimal Sampling Strategy" Processes 9, no. 2: 359. https://doi.org/10.3390/pr9020359

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