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Biomass gasification plant serves transportation sector

Pulp & Paper Canada
April 01, 2014
By Pulp & Paper Canada
The GoBiGas gasification plant in Sweden is the first to combine a biomass gasification facility and methanation plant.
The GoBiGas gasification plant in Sweden is the first to combine a biomass gasification facility and methanation plant.

A Valmet-supplied gasification plant at GoBiGas (Gothenburg Biomass Gasification Project) will produce biomethane gas by gasifying forest residues and wood pellets. The biomethane is similar to natural gas and will primarily be used in the transport sector. The new plant is first of its kind in the world.

Johanna Lindén, Valmet's director of Scandinavia, Energy, explains the advantages of the chosen technology: “The indirect gasification generates high-energy gas with high heating value that can be mixed with natural gas. This makes it possible to replace a lot of today's fossil transportation fuel by fossil-free fuel in gas-powered vehicles."

“We are proud to be the first to inaugurate a gasification plant for production of high quality biomethane and we hope to see many followers. The journey has been interesting, challenging and complicated but in good company," comments Åsa Burman, CEO of GoBiGas project, Göteborg Energi.

The biomass is gasified in a process called indirect gasification, developed by the Austrian company Repotec. Valmet is handling the engineering work for the gasification plant in Gothenburg with a license from Repotec.

Gasification takes place in a separate reactor and heat is transferred from a combustion chamber by circulation of hot bed material, i.e. indirect gasification. Biomass is fed into the gasifier where it, on contact with the hot bed material, undergoes thermochemical decomposition. After the cleaning and methanation, the gas is imported to the natural gas supply and is used in Göteborg Energi's power plant.

Because of the high quality, the biomethane can be fed to the existing distribution grid, where it is mixed with natural gas. Combining a gasification plant using biomass as fuel and a methanation plant is unique in the world.

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