Review of technical glycerol potential from biodiesel production and availability for improved cascading in Europe

The article entitled: Review of technical glycerol potential from biodiesel production and availability for improved cascading in Europehas been published and is available online.

Authors: André Brosowski (DBFZ), Stephanie Hauschild (DBFZ), Karin Naumann (DBFZ), Jens Hösel (DBFZ), Daniela Thrän (Helmholtz Centre for environmental research),

Type of publication: Article – Research Paper
Date: April 2017
Publication: Research Gate
Main GRAIL partner: DBFZ

Abstract: The utilisation of by‐products is an important step towards circular biobased economy. This article focuses on reviewing European glycerol potentials accruing as a by‐product from biodiesel production. Glycerol is currently used as feedstock in the sectors of food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. In order to make a first statement towards an improved and sustainable cascading the glycerol potentials were analysed in the context of projected feedstock demand for nine future plant concepts. The reviewed database covers a total of 203 operational biodiesel plants in 37 European countries. In 2013, European biodiesel production involved a technical glycerol potential of 828 kt a‐1. Considering different scales of technologies the availability of glycerol is a crucial criterion especially for green chemicals and advanced biofuels. Promising plant locations for that production have been identified in a belt from northern France to north‐eastern Germany. However, the feasibility of future plant concepts does not only depend on feedstock availability but also on political framework and techno‐economic performance of the future production technologies. To develop future plant concepts stepwise a long term stable biodiesel production is the key to realise improved cascading of the limited biomass resources.
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The research paper is available in pdf here.