Utilization of biomass in energy production helps reduce GHG emissions, replace fossil fuels and achieve energy supply independence. However, high biomass transportation costs present a roadblock towards biomass utilization projects.
A versatile unit which enables the operation close to the place of feedstock origin, minimizing transportation and logistics costs, would offer a solution to this issue. The concept of SMARt CHP combines two well established technologies, biomass gasification and gas engine power generation in a fully portable unit. This mobile unit will be capable of operating at different locations producing heat and power with high thermodynamic efficiency.
A prototype unit has been developed, producing approximately 4.7kWel and 12.5kWth, consuming 4-4.5kg/h of biomass. Biomass thermal utilization takes place in a fluidized bed reactor, where a gaseous fuel is produced. The gasifier is coupled to a gas engine that is appropriately modified and optimized in order to operate with the low energy content gas of the gasifier.