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Improving Biomass Logistics Cost within Agronomic Sustainability Constratints and Biomass Quality Targets
2012 National Sun Grant Meeting: Science for Biomass (2012)
  • Kevin L. Kenney
  • J. Richard Hess
  • William A. Smith
  • David J. Muth, Jr.
Equipment manufacturers have made rapid improvements in biomass harvesting and handling equipment. These improvements have increased transportation and handling efficiencies due to higher biomass densities and reduced losses. Improvements in grinder efficiencies and capacity have reduced biomass grinding costs. Biomass collection efficiencies (the ratio of biomass collected to the amount available in the field) as high as 75% for crop residues and greater than 90% for perennial energy crops have also been demonstrated. However, as collection rates increase, the fraction of entrained soil in the biomass increases, and high biomass residue removal rates can violate agronomic sustainability limits. Advancements in quantifying multi-factor sustainability limits to increase removal rate as guided by sustainable residue removal plans, and mitigating soil contamination through targeted removal rates based on soil type and residue type/fraction is allowing the use of new high efficiency harvesting equipment and methods. As another consideration, single pass harvesting and other technologies that improve harvesting costs cause biomass storage moisture management challenges, which challenges are further perturbed by annual variability in biomass moisture content. Monitoring, sampling, simulation, and analysis provide basis for moisture, time, and quality relationships in storage, which has allowed the development of moisture tolerant storage systems and best management processes that combine moisture content and time to accommodate baled storage of wet material based upon “shelf-life.” The key to improving biomass supply logistics costs has been developing the associated agronomic sustainability and biomass quality technologies and processes that allow the implementation of equipment engineering solutions.
  • Biomass feedstock,
  • Logistics,
  • Harvest,
  • Collection,
  • Storage,
  • Variability analysis
Publication Date
Citation Information
Kevin L. Kenney, J. Richard Hess, William A. Smith and David J. Muth. "Improving Biomass Logistics Cost within Agronomic Sustainability Constratints and Biomass Quality Targets" 2012 National Sun Grant Meeting: Science for Biomass (2012)
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