[Gasification] Small steam systems plus gasifiers for electricity
psanders at ilstu.edu
Sun Dec 1 17:03:56 CST 2013
Thank you everyone. Many experts have responded, and the responses
have been singularly against using steam for small electricity production.
Doc / Dr TLUD / Prof. Paul S. Anderson, PhD
Email: psanders at ilstu.edu
Skype: paultlud Phone: +1-309-452-7072
On 12/1/2013 1:57 PM, Tom Miles wrote:
> We have seen four or five biomass fired Stirling companies fail in the
> last 15 years. Successful Stirling engine companies supply the solar
> and recreational markets with very small systems and run mostly on LPG.
> Stirling DK had the potential to fill an important niche. I liked
> their 9 kWe and 35 kWe units. It seems likely that they failed for
> business reasons as much as technical reasons. They were very slow to
> get organized and capitalize on the early experience of the DTU units.
> It is not clear why they charged so much.
> We have a few small scale 50 kWe Organic Rankin cycle (ORC) generators
> in operation in the US. They seem to work very well for clean waste
> heat like exhaust from diesel gensets or biogas. One of my clients is
> testing one on diesel exhaust. http://electratherm.com/
> The owner of a poultry farm tells me that his ORC unit works fine but
> the heat exchanger from his poultry litter fired gasifier keeps
> plugging up. (We have been there before.) He gets 20-30 kWe from the
> $280,000 machine. The gasifier and ORC system cost $1 million. There
> seem to be conflicting reports about how much the system is actually run.
> Steam systems suit district heat or industrial settings where much
> more steam is produced than needed for electricity otherwise load
> balancing is a problem. We have seen a 1 MWe wood boiler and steam
> turbine system fail at a prison due to the inability to balance
> heating and electrical loads. We saw many small turbines in the 250
> kWe-1.5 MWe range installed in the wood industry in the 1970s and
> 1980s. It was common to see a sawmill generate higher pressure steam
> and use a 500 kWe backpressure turbine to reduce the pressure for
> distribution to a large number of lumber dry kilns. We have lost most
> of our sawmills in our region and electricity is cheap so we haven't
> seen any new systems installed. I visited a 600 kWe Russian turbine at
> a district heating plant in Hjordkær, Denmark in about 2004. At the
> time they had been running since 1997 and were happy with it. They
> were serving about 700 homes and a chocolate factory. It seemed like a
> good match.
> In recent years we have seen a couple of small scale steam systems in
> the 250 kWe to 2 MWe range. One supplier will provide a 1 MWe modular
> fluidized bed steam system for $5 million. These need to be installed
> in industrial or utility setting for reasons cited by others.
> We were disappointed last year not to find more gasifiers with
> demonstrated performance in the 2 MWe scale for the Alaska project.
> Nexterra was just installing their 2 MWe Jenbacher system at
> University of British Columbia. Babcock Volund gave us a budget price
> but didn't think putting a unit in Alaska was interesting to them.
> Kawasaki Heavy Industries seems to have abandoned their program that
> was based on the CarboConsult downdraft gasifier. Their principal
> proponent of the system retired. Etc. And we didn't want a gasifier
> with a wet cleaning system. We did receive budget proposals from some
> companies that had 150 kWe to 250 kWe gasifiers but that didn't have
> field performance data to demonstrate their production with multiple
> We still need to demonstrate more viable small scale systems with any
> [mailto:gasification-bounces at lists.bioenergylists.org] *On Behalf Of
> *Thomas Koch
> *Sent:* Sunday, December 01, 2013 9:42 AM
> *To:* Discussion of biomass pyrolysis and gasification
> *Subject:* Re: [Gasification] Small steam systems plus gasifiers for
> Striling.dk just went banckrupt -- and gasification gas is Dynamite.
> [mailto:gasification-bounces at lists.bioenergylists.org] *På vegne af
> *Jeff Davis
> *Sendt:* 1. december 2013 18:37
> *Til:* Discussion of biomass pyrolysis and gasification
> *Emne:* Re: [Gasification] Small steam systems plus gasifiers for
> I would have to agree with Steve. Steam is a lot like playing with
> dynamite. A gas producer and an off the shelf engine is the system to
> Too bad nobody is working on a Stirling engine for using excess heat.
> On 12/01/2013 11:29 AM, sabbadess at aol.com <mailto:sabbadess at aol.com>
> I found that small steam at the residential scale is just a bad idea.
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