Conventional feedstock supply systems exist and have been developed for traditional agriculture and forestry systems. These conventional feedstock supply systems can be effective in high biomass-yielding areas (such as for corn stover in Iowa and plantation-grown pine trees in the southern United States), but they have their limits, particularly with respect to addressing feedstock quality and reducing feedstock supply risk to biorefineries. They also are limited in their ability to efficiently deliver energy crops. New logistics technologies and systems are needed to address these challenges and support a growing bioenergy industry.
The proposed solution put forth by the DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office to address these challenges is Advanced Feedstock Supply Systems. The Advanced Feedstock Supply Systems incorporate densification, drying, and other preprocessing technologies to create a biomass commodity. A feature of these advanced systems is biomass preprocessing depots that format biomass in fairly close proximity to the location of production. However, validating assumptions used to develop these advanced systems is critical.
The Advanced Feedstock Supply System Validation Workshop gathered experts from industry, DOE offices, DOE-funded laboratories, and academia to discuss approaches to addressing challenges associated with an expanding bioenergy industry and assumptions used in the Advanced Feedstock Supply System. The workshop was sponsored by the DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office.