Reusing Pruning Residues for Thermal Energy Production: A Mobile App to Match Biomass Availability with the Heating Energy Balance of Agro-Industrial Buildings

Carlo Bisaglia, Massimo Brambilla, Maurizio Cutini, Antonio Bortolotti, Guido Rota, Giorgio Minuti, Roberto Sargiani
2018 Sustainability  
Using the pruning residues of woody crops can be beneficial in many ways (e.g., excellent energy balance, a net reduction in pollutant emission and a positive contribution to global warming control). This article describes the background work and development of a new support tool that will allow the user to know the amount and quality of pruning residue required to meet the energy requirements to heat both residential and agro-industrial buildings (e.g., greenhouses). Knowing the average amount
more » ... the average amount of pruned biomass (t d.m. ha−1), the average lower heating value of wood (4.00 kWh kg−1) and the average efficiency of a woody biomass boiler (90%) enabled the overall available net energy yearly amount (kWh year−1) to be determined. This was compared to the overall energy requirements (kWh year−1) of agro-industrial buildings, which are a result of their main features (e.g., maximum heatable surface, building energy classification and the climatic zone). Depending on user needs, the tool suggests the amount of required biomass and, if not entirely available, what amount of fossil fuels are required to fulfill the energy requirement. The algorithm output was compared with the results of two case studies carried out on seven farm buildings and nine greenhouses. Knowing the amount and energy potential of the available biomass allows for planning and evaluation of the planned benefits.
doi:10.3390/su10114218 fatcat:5n3gqiyowrdljfkw7uubajnac4