On the Benefit of Modular and Mobile Production Units in Biomass Waste-to-energy Supply Chains

Andrew Allman, Che Lee, Mariano Martín, Qi Zhang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


Upgrading biomass waste to energy is a promising technology which enhances the economic values of crop residues such as wheat straw and corn stover, which are typically present in excess in highly agricultural regions such as the United States Midwest. In this work, gasification of biomass to turn a gas turbine is considered as a technology for upgrading biomass waste to energy. We propose to use modular and mobile production units to limit the transportation cost of moving biomass to energy production facilities in a distributed supply chain. We present a generic optimization framework for determining the optimal location and relocation of gasifier and turbine modules over time. To demonstrate the efficacy of our framework, we apply it to a case study where biomass residue in Minnesota is converted to energy. The results show the economic benefits of considering mobility of modules in processing biomass waste, which is produced at different times in different parts of the state.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComputer Aided Chemical Engineering
PublisherElsevier B.V.
Number of pages6
StatePublished - Jan 2020

Publication series

NameComputer Aided Chemical Engineering
ISSN (Print)1570-7946

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge financial support from the University of Minnesota.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.


  • biomass waste-to-energy
  • circular economy
  • distributed manufacturing
  • modular manufacturing
  • process intensification


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