Evolution Overview

In the tables in this section, for each year from 1997 through 2030, the performance of two systems is estimated. One is a pulverized coal power plant using only coal. These cases represent the plant operation prior to a biomass co-firing retrofit. The other case shows the performance of the same power plant operating with biomass co-firing. The 199 7 base case is a 100 MW plant which obtains 10% of its total heat input from biomass while in the co-firing mode , resulting in 10 MW of biomass-based power generation capacity. This is representative of the planned size and co -firing rates of two Northeast power plants that are presently participating in the DOE Salix Consortium demonstration project. The same size boiler is used for the year 2000 case, but the co-firing rate is increased from 10% to 15% , assuming that lessons learned during initial years will permit sustained operation in similar boilers at a 15% co-firin g rate. This case results in 15 MW of biomass-based generation capacity. Co-firing rates as high as 15% have bee n demonstrated during preliminary testing. For the years 2005 through 2030, co-firing rates remain the same (15%), but boiler sizes are increased from year to year. This demonstrates the effect that improved biomass feedstock acquisition techniques and increased development of energy crops will have in allowing increasingly larger power plants to be co-fired near maximum levels of 15%.

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