BIOS - Bioenergy
  YOUR PARTNER FOR ENERGY FROM BIOMASS AND ENERGY EFFICIENCY  
 

Biomass-fired District Heating Plant in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

Project Description:
Preliminary design and comprehensive feasibility study for a biomass district heating plant in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA in co-operation with Local Energy (a non-profit organization specializing in local renewable energy). Performance of the detailed design of the components of the most economical alternative. The Project was financed by a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) under the Biomass Research and Development Initiative.

Project Update:
Phase I of the project was successfully finished in December 2004 (see downloads). In January 2005, the BIOS project team started working on phase II in co-operation with Local Energy, with the aim to make all technical preparations required (i.e. detailed design, final cost calculation, preparation of requests for bids, bid evaluation) for installation of a biomass demonstration project at the Santa Fe Community College in Santa Fe, New Mexico (see picture on the left). The detailed design was finalized in October 2005 (see downloads). After compilation of the legal and commercial conditions for the bid documents by the Santa Fe Community College, the bid procedure for the biomass-fired boiler plant was held in spring 2006. Phase II of the project was finished in June 2006 with the evaluation of the bids. The USDA project was successfully concluded in December 2006 by submitting the final report to the USDA (see downloads). Construction and start-up of the biomass-fired heating plant took place in 2007/2008.

Phase I – successfully finished in December 2004

Phase I included the preliminary design and comprehensive feasibility study for a biomass district heating plant in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The project focused on the evaluation of a main district heating system for downtown Santa Fe as well as prospective sites for decentralized biomass micro-grids. The heat demand of the individual supply areas was determined by a detailed heat-demand inquiry. The obtained heat demand data and information regarding the heating behavior throughout the year was used to design the network of pipes and the heating plant by applying specially developed computer programs. The preliminarily designed components were optimized to achieve a plant operation as efficient and cost-effective as possible. The plant design and optimization was supported by an in-depth fuel study, to determine the quantity and quality of the available biomass fuel resources. A comprehensive economic investigation including a sensitivity analysis was performed for all optimized plant options to evaluate the economic efficiency of the selected options. Using these results and the outcome of the performed emission estimate, it was possible to select the economically and environmentally most sound options (see phase II) and to define recommendations concerning the further procedure towards the first biomass projects in Santa Fe.

BIOS BIOENERGIESYSTME GmbH performed the following tasks of the project:

  • Energy load assessment (in co-operation with Local Energy)
  • Heat demand calculation and calculation of the annual heat demand line of the system
  • Definition of the supply area, preliminary design of the network of pipes and evaluation of suitable areas for micro-grids that are located outside of the main supply area
  • Preliminary design of the heating plant and comparison of different operating options (heat only operation or combined heat and power production) as well as the preliminary design of small-scale biomass heating plants for micro-grid supply
  • Detailed biomass fuel study including the evaluation of the quality of biomass fuel sources as well as the analysis of fuel samples (in co-operation with Local Energy)
  • Survey of local manufacturers of biomass-fired boilers, flue gas cleaning systems and piping systems
  • Preparation of an emission estimate with particular attention to the possible generation of tradable CO2-certificates
  • Implementation of cost-effectiveness studies and sensitivity analysis, and identification of the economically and ecologically optimal solution and definition of target values

To top

Phase II – successfully finished in June 2006

Fig. 3

 

 

 

Based on the results of phase I, the main goal of phase II was to make all technical preparations required for the successful implementation of a biomass demonstration project (district heating plant) at the Santa Fe Community College (nominal boiler capacity 1 MW or 3.4 MMBTU/hr) in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The picture on the right shows the proposed site of the heating plant. Phase II comprised of the detailed design for the heating plant, including fuel storage and handling, the preparation of RFP (request for proposals) packages, the evaluation of the submitted offers and support in the selection of the contractors, support in preparation of technical documents required for permit applications, and the development of model fuel supply contracts.

BIOS BIOENERGIESYSTME GmbH performed the following tasks of the project:

  • Detailed design of the biomass-fired boiler, including fuel logistics, as well as all other mechanical plant components (hydronic system, heat distribution, heat transfer stations, control system)
  • Computer simulations of year-round operation of the heating plant
  • Soliciting of non-binding offers
  • Final cost calculation and economics
  • Preparation of requests for bids (technical sections) for the biomass heating plant as well as performance of the bid evaluation
  • Support in the preparation of technical documents required for permit applications and support within the technical approval procedure
  • Support concerning the preparation of fuel-supply contracts
  • Preparation of reports regarding the result of the detailed design and the final cost calculation

Human resources: 2 project engineers part-time in Santa Fe (Dipl.-Ing. Klaus Supancic, Dipl.-Ing. Thomas Bärnthaler) and additional support from the main office in Graz
With the evaluation of the bids, Phase II of the project was successfully concluded in June 2006. Consequently, all technical information required for the realization of a biomass demonstration project at the Santa Fe Community College is available. Currently, the internal organizational, legal and financial framework conditions required for the implementation of the biomass-fired heating plant at the Santa Fe Community College are acquired by the Board of the College. Implementation and start-up of the biomass demonstration project at the Santa Fe Community College is scheduled to take place in 2007.
The USDA project was successfully concluded in December 2006 by submitting the final report to the USDA (see downloads).

To top

Fig. 4
Fig. 5

General Information about Santa Fe:

Capital of New Mexico, USA
Inhabitants: approx. 70,000
Altitude: approx. 2,100 m (7,000 ft)
Pictures: St. Francis Cathedral (left), Inn at the Loretto

Downloads:

Article NEW MEXICAN 2004/06/02 – JPG#0001

Article NEW MEXICAN 2004/08/04 – PDF#0066

Abstract Heat Demand Inquiry Report – PDF#0067

pdf SantaFe-HDIAbstract.pdf (643.19 kB)

Abstract Fuel Study – PDF#0068

Abstract Final Report Phase I – PDF#0069

Abstract Final Report Phase II - PDF#0075

Biomass-Fired District Energy: A Source of Economic Development and Energy Security – PDF#0076