The impact of biomass drying on the efficiency of a gasification plant co-producing Fischer-Tropsch fuels and heat: A conceptual investigation

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Abstract

This study examines the impact of biomass drying on the overall efficiency of a Biomass-to-Liquids (BTL) process co-producing Fischer-Tropsch (FT) syncrude and heat. The proposed BTL process is based on steam-blown dual fluidised-bed gasification of biomass, simplified gas clean-up and FT synthesis. Biomass drying was found to have a significant effect on both the FT product yield and the overall thermal efficiency of the BTL plant. In the considered concept, FT off-gases are used as supplementary feedstock in the oxidiser, alongside with char, to satisfy the heat demand in gasification. Drying of the biomass feedstock leads to reduced need of water evaporation during gasification. This in turn reduces the demand for off-gases in the oxidiser, and allows to produce more syncrude (and less off-gases) in the FT unit. The simulations indicated that more extensive drying could result in a significant increase in FT syncrude yield: the thermal efficiency of FT syncryde production increased from 47.7% to 54.6% as the moisture mass fraction of the biomass feed was reduced from 30% to 8%. The highest overall thermal efficiencies of 85–88% were obtained with a two-stage drying concept that combines a belt dryer and an indirectly-heated steam dryer.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105272
JournalBiomass and Bioenergy
Volume127
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Belt dryer
  • Biomass-to-Liquids
  • Dual fluidised-bed
  • Simulation
  • Steam dryer
  • Synthesis

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