Finding The \“optimal” Size And Location Of Treatment Plants For A Jatropha Oil Plantation Project In Thailand
Free (open access)
571 - 578
J. E. Everett
Curcas Energy is developing a sustainable energy project in Thailand to produce Jatropha oil as a biological source of diesel fuel. The company is providing Jatropha seeds and advice to smallholder farmers. The crop is being grown as hedgerows on otherwise unused land. The nuts will be transported from widely distributed collection points to central plants where the oil will be extracted. The extraction plants can be any integer multiple of a basic unit, with larger plants having advantages of scale that have to be weighed against the lesser transport costs to smaller more widely distributed treatment plants. This paper describes a modelling tool, developed in Excel, which enables planners to compare the costs and benefits of alternative plant locations and sizes. The collection point locations and estimated production rates are entered into the model, together with potential treatment plant locations, costs and capacities, and transport costs per kilometre. The model computes the preferred plant destination for each collection point, after taking into account production rates and treatment capacities, and plots a map of all the collection points and plants, colour coded to indicate the destination plants for each collection point. The planner can iteratively adjust the plant locations, capacities and costs to explore the wide range of suggested alternatives to be considered. Keywords: transport, sustainable energy, Jatropha, biofuel, Thailand.
transport, sustainable energy, Jatropha, biofuel, Thailand.