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Savremena poljoprivredna tehnika
2010, vol. 36, iss. 2, pp. 167-177
article language: Serbian
document type: Review Paper

Biomass: Energy resource of the future
aUniversity of Novi Sad, Faculty of Agriculture
bGrad Novi Sad, Novi Sad

e-mail: jtodor@polj.uns.ac.rs

Abstract

The direct burning of solid biomass is the oldest energy technology used by man. This combustion is a well-established commercial technology with applications in most industrialized and developing countries. Development of this technology for energy production is presently concentrated on resolving environmental problems, improving the overall performance with multi fuel operation and increasing the energy efficiency of the power wherever possible in the heat cycles. Current level of energy production in Serbia satisfies merely 25% of the country's needs making Serbia increasingly dependent on energy imports. It is estimated that Serbia will exhaust its current coal supplies within the next 55 years, and oil and gas within 20 years. As regards consumption, it is estimated that the overall energy consumption is in favor of fossil fuels 93%, leaving only 7% for renewable sources. According to some assessments, so far merely 20 to 25% of the total renewable energy capacity has been used. Around 80% of unused potential is in biomass exploitation (wooden and agricultural biomass), whereas the remaining 20% consist of micro hydro-plants and geothermal sources. Biomass potential could be used to replace 25% of the current total energy production in Serbia. The dominant source of bio-energy in Serbia is agriculture (70%) while the rest comes from wooden biomass. There is a strong potential for energy wood growing on about 200.000 ha of uncultivated soil. The use of biomass for energy generation is a priority task for Serbian development. One of the obstacles to a widespread adoption of biomass fuels is the difficulty associated with combustion of biomass materials. These fuels are low cost but also low quality in combustion terms. They have relatively high and variable moisture contents and variable energy contents. These factors make control of their combustion difficult. Presently, there are many established and reliable technologies for combustion of biomass in furnaces and boilers. Probably one of the most interesting technical solutions for the usage of biomass for energy is CHP - Combined Heat and Power plants (also known as Cogeneration,). In these plants, a power station or heat engine is used to contemporaneously generate both electricity and useful heat. Contrary to conventional power plants that emit the created heat, CHP captures the by-product heat for domestic or industrial heating purposes. This is the so called decentralized energy. The paper describes the technologies and techniques which can be used for combustion of biomass as the most important renewable energy resource in Vojvodina.

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References

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