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Exploiting cheese whey as an energy resource to meet the needs of a food industry in Greece

Petropoulou Marina

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Year 2022
Type of Item Diploma Work
Bibliographic Citation Marina Petropoulou, "Exploiting cheese whey as an energy resource to meet the needs of a food industry in Greece", Diploma Work, School of Production Engineering and Management, Technical University of Crete, Chania, Greece, 2022
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More than 100 million people are affected by the effects of energy poverty in Europe, leading to a variety of health problems as well as personal isolation. The food industry, due to its increased needs, both for electricity and heat, contributes to a high degree to the use of large amounts of energy, and by extension plays a key role in the energy crisis. Among the different options to promote sustainable development, the integration of Renewable Energy Sources (RES) technologies is to exploit local potential, enhance operation and reliability, but also reduce the carbon footprint at the same time. Several researchers have adopted different approaches in various applications, exploiting "green" energy and the rapid development of its exploitation technologies.The present study deals with the techno-economic analysis of a hybrid energy production system for the purpose of energy upgrading of a food industry (dairy processing) in Greece, which is based on the energy utilization of its organic waste. In the context of the study, RES integration, taking into account the real needs and the available local potential was evaluated through the creation and modeling of alternative combinations of technologies. Among nine different scenarios, in which 2 different RES technologies were proposed but also two different biomass energy production methods were compared, scenario 9 was chosen as optimal, which consisted of photovoltaic and wind systems, a biomass generator and a hot water boiler. The specific hybrid energy system (HRES) lead to a 64.0% reduced levelized cost of energy.The grid purchases will be eliminated, while the examined industry will adopt an ecological operational character in harmony with the principles of sustainable development and the circular economy. Finally, this research acquires a weighty importance due to the energy crisis we are experiencing because of it and could be a guide for similar applications in companies of the sector or even on a larger scale.

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