Biomass supply chain optimization : consideration of underutilised biomass via element targeting approach

Lim, Chun Hsion (2016) Biomass supply chain optimization : consideration of underutilised biomass via element targeting approach. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Achieving a sustainable process system is one of the main focuses in research and development throughout the world. Development in renewable resources is at the peak to replace and reduce the usage of fossil fuel in chemical and energy production. Bio-resources have shown great potential to accomplish a sustainable system, especially bio-waste which also known as biomass, to avoid interruption of food supplement within the supply chain network. However, worldwide implementation of biomass-based process technology is yet to be feasible due to high logistic cost, complexity of biomass properties, fluctuation of biomass availability, and relatively low conversion rate in biomass conversion technologies. Unique regional biomass system further creates research gaps as researches are conducted independently to only focus on specific biomass species available within the region. This raises issue of underutilisation of biomass where biomasses value are not used in the full potential, or ignorance of certain species of biomass (such as food waste, fruit shells and energy crop) in research development.

This thesis specifically evaluated the current issues in biomass supply chain network management to enhance the feasibility of biomass industry implementation. The main objective of this thesis is to improve the biomass supply chain network management by integrating underutilised biomasses into existing biomass process plant (built) without major modification on the current process technologies such as equipment redesign or modifications. Underutilised biomasses are referring to those species that yet to have well-developed application (pilot plant scale) or potential biomasses that were ignored in a regional area due to issues such as low availability. This thesis discusses in detail on the relevant previous research works and supporting materials toward the introduction of novel philosophy, element targeting approach, which suggested selection of biomass feedstock via element characteristics instead of biomass species to consider underutilised biomasses into the system. Upon verification of the approach based on literature data and experimental work, element targeting approach is integrated into biomass supply chain optimisation model. The proposed mathematical models enable consideration of underutilised biomasses, and demonstration case studies results have shown promising improvement over the conventional approaches and its capability to handle fluctuation issues in biomass availability.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Lam, Hon Loong
Keywords: biomass conversion, sustainable process systems
Subjects: T Technology > TP Chemical technology
Faculties/Schools: University of Nottingham, Malaysia > Faculty of Science and Engineering — Engineering > Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering
Item ID: 38870
Depositing User: LIM, CHUN HSION
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2018 08:55
Last Modified: 28 Jan 2018 05:06

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