Demag Cranes for biomass cogeneration facility
25 October 2011, News release from Demag Cranes & Components Ltd
Processing 32,000 tonnes of wood chip per year
Clean and efficient generation of heat and electricity
Demag Cranes has installed an automatic materials handling system at a wood fired cogeneration power station at Hamburg, Germany. The state-of-the-art facility has been developed under the auspices of Schuler Consulting Engineers, to meet the increased demand for sustainable energy solutions.
The biomass cogeneration facility burns woodchip by-products from local forestry and landscaping activities, generating heat and electricity, whilst reducing the depletion of fossil fuel resources. The Hamburg power station processes 32,000 t of woodchip annually, generating over 13,000 MWh of electricity per year and some 60,000 MWh of heat, which warms 8,000 households in the district. Additional heat is also reclaimed from the exhaust gas created during incineration. The biomass burning process is inherently clean and efficient, with a usage ratio in excess of 85% and CO2 emissions reduced by 23,000 t per year.
To meet the specific materials handling requirements of the Hamburg operation, Demag Cranes installed a 16.4 m span, 11 t SWL, automatic double girder overhead travelling crane, mounted with a specially developed 8 cu m multi jaw grab. The process crane features frequency regulated speeds, in three directions for optimum travel and lifting characteristics. Controlled by warehouse management software, the system is designed for high volume handling. Long travel speeds of up to 50 m/min, cross travel of up to 40 m/min and hoisting rates of up to 50 m/min facilitate the movement of 140 cu m of woodchip per hour. A load sway damping system provides smooth lifting and movement, avoiding the possibility of damage caused by collision of the grab and the pit walls.
Raw biomass is delivered to the plant by trucks and deposited in a 300 cu m tipping pit, where it is automatically monitored for moisture content and fuel grade. Once the vehicle has cleared the tipping area, the crane system moves the woodchip to three pre-determined zones, within the 900 cu m intermediate bunker, according to fuel grade. The system is programmed to maintain a fixed fill level within the silo, which feeds the furnace. When fixed sensors indicate that the minimum fill level is reached, the crane system automatically transports biomass material from the storage bunker to replenish the silo.
In addition to the movement of biomass, the crane also handles the blending of woodchip to ensure optimum combustability. Should the system detect that raw material is too moist, or of insufficient fuel grade, the warehouse management software determines the required blending ratio. The crane then picks up biomass from the various zones of the buffer store, to achieve the required blend ratio for efficient heat generation.
The Demag automatic crane system offers a number of advantages over alternative materials handling systems, such as wheel loaders. Increased productivity, lower noise emissions, less manpower and reduced operating costs are amongst the benefits.
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