Wood fuel has several environmental advantages over fossil fuels. The main advantage is that wood is a renewable resource, offering a sustainable, dependable supply. Other advantages include the fact that the amount of carbon dioxide emitted during the combustion process is typically 90% less than when burning fossil fuel. There is a wide range of possible technologies for generating electricity from wood fuel. The three current leading technologies are combustion plant, gasifiers and pyrolysis plant. The design of a plant as well as the choice of technology will depend on whether the priority is to supply heat, electricity or combined heat and power. The common way to classify energy technologies is by power range and by type of usage, that means domestic heating, collective heating and / or power production and finally, centralized power production. For domestic heating (<=100 kWth), logs stoves, pellets stoves and boilers are the technologies are already available. For collective heating (≤10 MWth), wood boilers, power steam cycles and gasification gensets are well established technologies. In the case of centralized power production (› 10 MWel), power steam cycles, integrated combined cycles and co-firing of wood and coal are the available techniques.
Keywords: Wood fuel, combustion, gasification, pyrolysis, cogeneration, combined cycles, co-firing