Currently, slightly over 80% of the total global electricity output is generated from fossil fuels. Following the formulation and implementation of stringent laws, coupled with the rising global awareness on the effects of excessive CO2 emission, this is subject to decrease. In line with this paradigm, the development of alternative renewable fuel sources has been the subject of recent research work. In one approach, biomass has been used to generate clean energy. This has set precedence for its integration in other systems. Nonetheless, in systems such as gas turbine facilities, the practical implementation of alternative fuels such a biomass is still challenging. Such an endeavor has been met by numerous technical, economical and legal obstacles hence it is still subject to profound research.
Attempts to resolve the aforementioned challenges have yielded promising results. In fact, it has been shown that the symbiosis of existing gas turbine technologies and new ways of waste biomass energy utilization through firing or co – firing of biomass gasification gas, could help overcome the said challenges. However, no published work has attempted to utilize corn cob gasification gas as an additive of methane in a gas turbine.
In this view, researchers Dr. Milana Guteša Božo head of R&D at Termoinžinjering d.o.o, in collaboration with Dr. Agustin Valera-Medina, Professor Nick Syred and Dr. Philip J. Bowen at Cardiff School of Engineering established the optimized parameters for the implementation of corn cob gasification gas as additive of methane for gas turbine power applications. This way, they sought to provide valuable information regarding the use of the resource, thus ultimately ensuring higher environmental and economic benefits would be achieved by future users of their concept. Their work is currently published in the research journal, Biomass and Bioenergy.
Generally, they analyzed the practical implementation of corn cob gasification gas with CO2 recirculation in gas turbines. Their method entailed of two scenarios each with five different cases, where; in the first scenario fuel mass flows were kept constant regardless of the fuel quality change consequence of the corn cob gas share, while as in the second scenario fuel volume flows were assumed constant. All in all, fuel quality impacts on a gas turbine power plant performance were analyzed using a numerical model of a physical cycle that enabled the simulation of a 3.9 MW experimentally correlated gas turbine.
The authors reported that the reaction modelling showed a decrease of the adiabatic temperature of corn cob gas share in both scenarios. Moreover, the oxygen and nitrogen share in the combustion products was seen to increase, while water vapor and carbon dioxide decreased with an increase of the corn cob gasification gas share.
In summary, their study presented a fuel quality impact analysis for corn cob gasification gas. The analyzed gas was described as a low calorific gas, without potential of being implemented in gas turbine plant by itself. Overall, results showed that the utilization of corn cob gasification gas is possible through co-firing with natural gas with acceptable values without modification of the fuel system or gas turbine.
Milana Guteša Božo, Agustin Valera-Medina, Nick Syred, Philip J. Bowen. Fuel quality impact analysis for practical implementation of corn cob gasification gas in conventional gas turbine power plants. Biomass and Bioenergy, volume 122 (2019) page 221–230.Go To Biomass and Bioenergy