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Environmental Systems Analysis of Waste Management: Prospects of Hydrogen Production from Waste for use in FCVs
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Industrial Ecology.
2000 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

ORWARE, an evolving systems analysis based computer model is used to assess the performance of different waste management options from a life cycle perspective. The present version of the model consists of different submodels for transport, treatment, and disposal of different types of liquid and solid wastes and recycling of materials. Flows between submodels are described by a vector of several substances of different relevance to the system. The model calculates emissions to water and air, amount of residues returned to arable land and energy flows using the tools of life cycle analysis (LCA) and substance flow analysis (SFA). In going in the direction of stringent environmental standards and policies, there is a need for maximizing energy recovery from waste for both environmental and economic benefits. Sweden has already experience of recovering energy from waste for district heating. Recovering energy not only of high value but also of higher quality from waste would be of interest. Hydrogen is one carrier of such energy. The possibility of using hydrogen from waste as a fuel in the transport sector would contribute in heading for creating a clean environment. In this thesis a new submodel for steam reforming of biogas recovered from an anaerobic digester is developed and used with other submodels within the ORWARE framework. Four scenarios representing alternative ways of energy recovery from the organic waste in Stockholm have been simulated to compare the associated energy turnover and different environmental impacts. Digestion of the organic waste and using the biogas to fuel cars is compared against steam reforming of biogas to hydrogen or thermal gasification of the waste and processing the product gases to hydrogen. In the latter two cases hydrogen produced is used in fuel cell cars. Avoided impacts of using the biogas and hydrogen are analyzed using the fourth scenario where the waste is incinerated to generate heat and electricity. Functional equivalence between scenarios is achieved by external supply of heat, electricity and petrol. While recognizing the uncertainties during modelling and simulation, it is possible to conclude that the results indicate that there is advantage of reduced environmental impact and high energy turnover in introducing the technologies of producing hydrogen from waste into the waste management system. Further and thorough investigation is recommended to come up with a sound and firm conclusion. Key words: Systems analysis, Life cycle analysis, Substance flow analysis, Waste management, Environmental impact, Steam reforming, Thermal gasification, Fuel cell vehicles, Hydrogen

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2000. , 56 p.
, TRITA-KET-IM, ISSN 1402-7615 ; 2000:3
Keyword [en]
Systems analysis, Life cycle analysis, Substance flow analysis, Waste management, Environmental impact, Steam reforming, Thermal gasification, Fuel cell vehicles, Hydrogen
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-32426OAI: diva2:410616
www.ima.kth.seAvailable from: 2011-04-28 Created: 2011-04-14 Last updated: 2011-04-28Bibliographically approved

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