A case study in planning a renewable energy supply chain: Part i comparing biomass processes, costs and logistics

Joel Tallaksen, Tricia Simo Kush

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Biomass continues to be a focus as an alternative fuel source. The challenge in this is to maintain cost levels, particularly as biofuel feedstocks are farm-sourced and are often located an appreciable distance from the bioenergy facilities. Compared to conventional energy, the processes and supply chains are still in development and are rife with opportunities to optimize. There has been little economic incentive to improve the collection technology, as the materials are viewed as fodder or residual materials. In this case study, we compare the corn stover (leaves, stalks and cobs) supply chain to the corn cob supply chain. These feedstocks will be used at a renewable biomass heating facility in rural west central Minnesota. We analyze the costs associated with the processes and create a model using data from past research. Initial findings indicate that capital equipment expenditures, storage and transportation expenses, and changes to thethethe current labor source will become necessary for on-going, sustainable energy production. The high costs associated with collection activities need to be reduced with faster and more efficient equipment. The results of this study are broadly applicable and provide the data to make informed decisions about the source material and the transportation logistics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2014 International Annual Conference of the American Society for Engineering Management - Entrepreneurship Engineering
Subtitle of host publicationHarnessing Innovation, ASEM 2014
PublisherAmerican Society for Engineering Management
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Event2014 35th International Annual Conference of the American Society for Engineering Management - Entrepreneurship Engineering: Harnessing Innovation, ASEM 2014 - Virginia Beach, United States
Duration: Oct 15 2014Oct 18 2014

Other

Other2014 35th International Annual Conference of the American Society for Engineering Management - Entrepreneurship Engineering: Harnessing Innovation, ASEM 2014
CountryUnited States
CityVirginia Beach
Period10/15/1410/18/14

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Keywords

  • Analytic modeling
  • Biofuel logistics
  • Economics
  • Supply chain

Cite this

Tallaksen, J., & Simo Kush, T. (2014). A case study in planning a renewable energy supply chain: Part i comparing biomass processes, costs and logistics. In 2014 International Annual Conference of the American Society for Engineering Management - Entrepreneurship Engineering: Harnessing Innovation, ASEM 2014 American Society for Engineering Management.