Starting a project: Technology
Bioenergy plants can range from small domestic heating systems to multi-megawatt industrial plants requiring hundreds of thousands of tonnes of biomass fuel each year.

A variety of technologies exists to release and use the energy contained in biomass.

They range from combustion technologies that are well proven and widely used around the world for generating electricity generation, to emerging technologies that convert biomass into liquid fuels for road, sea and air transport.

We can convert biomass to energy through processes such as:

  • combustion (burning the biomass)
  • gasification (converting biomass to gaseous fuel)
  • pyrolysis (decomposing biomass at high temperatures in the absence of air)
  • anaerobic digestion (using microorganisms to decompose biomass, producing gas comprising mostly methane and carbon dioxide)
  • fermentation.

Conversion technologies are explained in:

You can also read about the conversion technologies used for each biomass within each biomass page.

The biogas handbook: Science, production and applications published in 2013 by IEA Bioenergy provides a comprehensive and systematic guide to the development and deployment of biogas supply chains and technology.