Planet Green Solutions and Goldmark Farm
Launch Biomass Power Plant Showcase
March 2011, Ocala, Florida. Planet Green Solutions has teamed with Goldmark Farm to deploy its proprietary thermo-chemical biomass refinery and power generation technology into a custom designed showcase. Through superior innovation, Planet Green Solutions is a leader in developing and deploying small-scale biomass power systems. Goldmark Farm provides the operating environment and various feedstock typical of its operation.
The biomass heat and power generation technology utilizes a thermo-chemical reactor which, in the presence of heat and limited oxygen, effectively breaks down any carbon based feedstock into mainly carbon and the combustible gases carbon-monoxide and hydrogen. This hydrogen synthesis gas can be used to fuel an internal combustion genset to produce electricity and it can be used to make heat.
After extensive research and development, last year Planet Green Solutions introduced a series of small-scale biomass power plants that extend from 20kWh electrical generation capability up to 120kWh.
These systems can mix and match both electrical power and heat generation capabilities along with a number of feedstock preparation and material handling options.
To go beyond 120kW in size, any number of single systems are ganged together to effectively provide a limitless amount of CHP. All Planet Green Solutions systems come complete with sensor based computer automation and easy to use touch screen control systems.
The Goldmark Farm showcase highlights the “top-of-the-line” of optional features and functions available from Planet Green Solutions. Housed in a beautiful building fully coordinated with the existing architecture, both feedstock preparation and power generation takes place under one roof.
Various feedstock are available at the farm. They range from chopped or chipped downed tree limbs to pine shaving bedding. The larger chunks and chips can be processed directly in the reactor, but the loose shavings must be processed by the feedstock preparation and material handling plant.
Beginning in an underground moving bed feedstock dryer, waste heat from the generator engine is pumped into the slow moving dryer to remove moisture from the feedstock. Next an auger transports the fuel into a finishing drum dryer.
Also utilizing waste heat from the generator engine, the drum dryer further reduces moisture content to around 15% to prepare the feedstock for the densification process.
After a short auger ride to the briquette machine, the loose shavings are squeezed under heat and pressure into solid dense bricks about the size of a hockey puck. Now the feedstock bricks are ready to fuel the power generation side of the plant.
The biomass briquette is not unique nor is it required. Many installations utilize waste wood or purposefully grown energy crops as feedstock. Frequently these can be prepared with little more than chipping or cutting to achieve an optimal fuel size. Others do require more elaborate mechanisms. Paper, cardboard, sawdust, straw, and grasses must undergo some combination of grinding and briquetting to complete their feedstock preparation.
The entire material handling plant is computer controlled with sensor based automation. The operator only needs to fill the hopper with feedstock and then press the start button.
The thermo-chemical biomass refinery and power generation system is truly a new breed of state-of-the-art innovation and design unlike any available elsewhere. Using a modified Imbert downdraft design, the rest of the biomass refinery and power generation system contains many Planet Green Solutions proprietary modifications which facilitate the removal of gas tars, eliminate particulates, and catalytically condition the gas.
At startup, a short burst of heat lights the pre-established char bed. Within seconds, feedstock is added and the reactor is making combustible gas. The flare is lit and it burns for a short time until running temperatures are established. An automated transport system fuels the refinery and maintains continuous operation for up to six days straight (after which a short maintenance window is required).
Next the system automatically primes the cooling and filter components, signals the engine to start, and the generator makes electricity. This installation uses synchronous switch gear to net meter all of the power back to the public electrical grid. Under normal conditions, the reactor and power generation system will continue to run until the feedstock runs out or the operator requests automated shutdown.
In addition to the generator and electronic switchgear, the Planet Green Biomass Power Plant utilizes a few sourced components to complete the system. Bag house filters, explosion-proof gas blowers, and automated ball valves are carefully selected for their suitability in this environment.
The power plant and material handling plant are both completely computer controlled. Every aspect of the system operates from a touch panel interface, while autonomous sequencing takes place with little human intervention. Systems are designed and deployed using industry standard electrical and safety codes. Planet Green Solutions designed everything to operate as easy as any household appliance.