Energy from sugarcane bagasse in Brazil: An assessment of the productivity and cost of different technological routes

Guilherme Dantas, Luiz F.L. Legey, Antonella Mazzone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

133 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Bagasse from sugarcane is traditionally used in the Brazilian sugar and ethanol industry to meet the energy needs of its own production processes and, more recently, to generate surplus electricity for sale on the national grid. Currently, the industry faces a difficult choice between either enhancing electricity generation or increasing ethanol production through the biochemical processing of bagasse. The aim of this paper is to examine the most promising technical configurations for bioenergy production using sugarcane bagasse and to discuss which configuration would be the most attractive investment option for the industry. At present, electricity generation through Rankine cycle power plants is the only commercially available alternative. Nevertheless, the analysis cannot be restricted only to the short term. For this purpose, cost analysis for 2030 were developed, and even in scenarios where there is an effective cost reduction of untradeable routes, the alternative of burning bagasse to generate electricity provides the most benefits from an investor perspective.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)356
Number of pages364
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Volume21
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Feb 2013

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