Title

Bioenergy Corp Production and Combustion in Agriculture

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Tony Brannon

Second Project Mentor & Advisor(s)

Jason Robertson

Presentation Format

Event

Abstract/Description

Biomass, vegetative waste from energy crops such as switch grass and sorghum, is a key input for transforming the face of energy and agriculture for the future of Kentucky, the nation, and the world. The purpose of this experiment at Murray State University using the Bio-Burner 500 unit—BB-500— from L.E.I products in Madisonville, KY, was to evaluate the efficiency of a combustion-based energy converter and boiler using various biomass materials, along with providing some heat to The Equine Center at Murray State University. Loose forms of switch grass, tobacco stalks, miscanthus, equine waste, wood shavings and mixtures of these fuels were burned over a 24 hr period in outdoor temperatures below 68°F. Factors including burn and ash weight, ash clinkers, fan and fuel speed, moisture levels of material, and BTU measurements were recorded to assist in determining the success of each burn trial and overall energy balance of the system. Upon analysis of the data, the biomass with the most productive burn proved to be the wood shavings. The least productive burns proved to be the cellulosic biomass, which included miscanthus and switchgrass, and the equine waste. The grasses burned less effectively than the woody materials, however, it required less material. Equine waste, while plentiful in our area, produces high ash amounts, and has a high affinity of making ash clinkers. Wood shavings and tobacco stalks burned more effectively, and less labor intensity, however, more material was required. The research conducted in this study can provide Murray State and the scientific community insightful information about future applications of bioenergy.

Location

Barkley Room, Curris Center

Start Date

April 2016

End Date

April 2016

Affiliations

Honors Thesis

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Apr 21st, 12:30 PM Apr 21st, 1:30 PM

Bioenergy Corp Production and Combustion in Agriculture

Barkley Room, Curris Center

Biomass, vegetative waste from energy crops such as switch grass and sorghum, is a key input for transforming the face of energy and agriculture for the future of Kentucky, the nation, and the world. The purpose of this experiment at Murray State University using the Bio-Burner 500 unit—BB-500— from L.E.I products in Madisonville, KY, was to evaluate the efficiency of a combustion-based energy converter and boiler using various biomass materials, along with providing some heat to The Equine Center at Murray State University. Loose forms of switch grass, tobacco stalks, miscanthus, equine waste, wood shavings and mixtures of these fuels were burned over a 24 hr period in outdoor temperatures below 68°F. Factors including burn and ash weight, ash clinkers, fan and fuel speed, moisture levels of material, and BTU measurements were recorded to assist in determining the success of each burn trial and overall energy balance of the system. Upon analysis of the data, the biomass with the most productive burn proved to be the wood shavings. The least productive burns proved to be the cellulosic biomass, which included miscanthus and switchgrass, and the equine waste. The grasses burned less effectively than the woody materials, however, it required less material. Equine waste, while plentiful in our area, produces high ash amounts, and has a high affinity of making ash clinkers. Wood shavings and tobacco stalks burned more effectively, and less labor intensity, however, more material was required. The research conducted in this study can provide Murray State and the scientific community insightful information about future applications of bioenergy.