Keywords

decision support systems, renewable energy, biomass, geographic information system, optimization

Start Date

1-7-2002 12:00 AM

Description

A decision support system for forest biomass exploitation for energy supply is presented. In the proposed approach, geographic information system based techniques are integrated with mathematical programming methods yielding a comprehensive system, which allows formalizing the problem, taking decisions, and evaluating their effects. The aim of this work is to evaluate the possibility of biomass exploitation for both thermal and electric energy production in a provincial area. The decision support system is able to locate and size different kinds of plants on the territory (defining which kind of energy is convenient to produce for the specific area), take into account several aspects (such as economic, technical, normative, and social), offer a user-friendly interface, and decide how to plan biomass collection and harvesting. Biomasses are present in the territory in different locations. In this work, i parcels of different areas have been considered, each of them being characterized by a predominant biomass typology. Then, k possible locations for the plants have been taken into account. The decisional variables to be determined reflect the main problems to be solved for the system; specifically they represent: the quantity of biomass i that must be harvested, the quantity of biomass i collected and transported to a specific plant k, the specific plant size, the quantity of thermal energy produced in a specific plant, and the quantity of electric energy to be produced by a specific plant. The cost function to be minimized takes into account installation, maintenance, transportation, collection, and energy distribution costs and possible benefits. The formulation of the problem includes constraints about the maximum quantity of biomass that can be exploited (established by normative or technical issues), technical aspects about the size of plants, and the need of thermal energy for the specific area. Finally, a case study is presented.

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Jul 1st, 12:00 AM

Renewable energy: a decision support system for forest biomass exploitation

A decision support system for forest biomass exploitation for energy supply is presented. In the proposed approach, geographic information system based techniques are integrated with mathematical programming methods yielding a comprehensive system, which allows formalizing the problem, taking decisions, and evaluating their effects. The aim of this work is to evaluate the possibility of biomass exploitation for both thermal and electric energy production in a provincial area. The decision support system is able to locate and size different kinds of plants on the territory (defining which kind of energy is convenient to produce for the specific area), take into account several aspects (such as economic, technical, normative, and social), offer a user-friendly interface, and decide how to plan biomass collection and harvesting. Biomasses are present in the territory in different locations. In this work, i parcels of different areas have been considered, each of them being characterized by a predominant biomass typology. Then, k possible locations for the plants have been taken into account. The decisional variables to be determined reflect the main problems to be solved for the system; specifically they represent: the quantity of biomass i that must be harvested, the quantity of biomass i collected and transported to a specific plant k, the specific plant size, the quantity of thermal energy produced in a specific plant, and the quantity of electric energy to be produced by a specific plant. The cost function to be minimized takes into account installation, maintenance, transportation, collection, and energy distribution costs and possible benefits. The formulation of the problem includes constraints about the maximum quantity of biomass that can be exploited (established by normative or technical issues), technical aspects about the size of plants, and the need of thermal energy for the specific area. Finally, a case study is presented.