I once read a joke about oil that sticks with me.
Here it is, in bullets:
* I just bought a toy dinosaur
* The toy dinosaur is made from plastic
* Plastic is made from oil
* Oil is made from dinosaurs
* So my toy dinosaur is made from real dinosaurs!
As with any joke, there is some reality to it!
There is no denying that coal as an energy source is being challenged on many fronts. Many states and countries are trying to limit their use of electric power generated from coal.
As a results, there is growth in the biomass fuel industry. Biomass is fuel that is created from renewable resources, such as:
* Wood chips, perhaps leftover from wood mill operations or manufacturers that have wood scraps
* Crops such as grasses grown to specifically be a fuel
* Animal waste such as manure
* Exotic fuels, such as pistachio shells!
In order to design a plant, or to evaluate a waste product, the biomass fuel must be tested. These tests include:
* Bulk Density: Lets you know how much can be stored. Bulk density is calculated by dropping the material into a known volume and then weighing the sample. By repeating this process and averaging the results, you can see how much of the fuel could be fit into various areas, or transportation costs could be calculated.
* Moisture Analysis: You need to know what weight percentage is just water
* Calorific Content: This is the real “meat” of the biomass fuel. It lets you know how much energy is contained in the fuel. Measured using a calorimeter.
* Ash Percentage & Analysis: As some fossil fuels are being replaced with these biomass fuels, it’s important to know what is left behind. First the ash mass is calculated. Then, the ash should be analyzed for several things, including:
-> Trace metals
If you are in need of biomass fuel testing, look us up, as we can perform all the above tests.
You might need to evaluate some wood chips from a mill, or test a type of plentiful grass in your area. Or, perhaps you have a new, exotic biomass that might be used as a fuel.