Synthesis of regional networks for the supply of energy and bioproducts

Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy (Impact Factor: 1.67). 12/2010; 12(6):635-645. DOI: 10.1007/s10098-010-0312-6

ABSTRACT This article presents a method for the synthesis of regional renewable energy supply chains, based on Mixed-Integer Linear
Programming (MILP). This method addresses the challenges presented by biomass resources. The main challenges are the distributive
and varied availabilities regarding both location and time. This work also aims to maximise the economically viable utilisation
of resources, accounting for the competition between energy and food production. A four-layer supply chain superstructure
has been developed, which includes the harvesting, preparation, core processing and distribution of products. This considered
system’s boundaries involve a region, which is then divided into zones for optimising conversion operations and transportation
flows. An MILP model has been formulated with profit maximisation as the optimisation criterion. The environmental impact
is evaluated by the carbon footprint. The sensitivity of the optimal solutions is analysed for different regions’ sizes, transportation
costs, pre-processing alternatives and the co-production of food and energy.

KeywordsBiomass supply chains-Bioenergy generation-Carbon footprint-Regional energy and food networks

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