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Title: Novel sustainable evaluation approach for multi-biomass supply chain
Author: How, Bing Shen
ISNI:       0000 0004 7430 1957
Awarding Body: University of Nottingham
Current Institution: University of Nottingham
Date of Award: 2018
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After the oil crisis held in 1973 and 1979, academicians and industry players have noticed the importance and necessity of having alternative and sustainable energy sources in future. Biological wastes, also named as “Biomass” has been cited as one of the significant sustainable energy sources. Biomass poses an ideal and substantial potential to achieve a sustainable system. However, the development of biomass industry is still relatively sluggish due to the lack of confidence of the investor to venture in this relatively new green business. This is most probably attributed to the low-maturation of biomass technologies compared to other conventional technologies, high logistics cost required for biomass transportation and uncertain market penetration barrier for the biomass-derived products. This raises the importance of having a proper biomass management system and a systematic evaluation approach to assess the sustainability performances of the biomass industry. Therefore, the ultimate goal of this thesis is to develop a sustainable multi-biomass supply chain with the aims of optimising all three sustainability dimensions simultaneously. A sustainable multi-biomass supply chain is referred as the integrated value chain of the green products, which derived from various types of biomass, starting from harvesting stage to the final products delivery stage. This thesis discusses in detail on the relevant previous research works toward the introduction of novel evaluation approach to attain different sustainable objectives (i.e., economic, environmental and social) simultaneously. The evaluation approach encompasses various components, including (i) model reduction by using P-graph integrated two-stage optimisation approach; (ii) consideration of vehicle capacity constraint for detailed transportation cost estimation; (iii) integration of various sustainability indexes using various optimisation techniques. On top of that, two novel debottlenecking approaches, one through principal component analysis (PCA) method; while another through P-graph framework, which able to identify and remove barriers that limit the sustainability performance of the biomass supply chain, are proposed. Aside from this, this thesis also aims to reduce the gaps between the researchers and industry players by developing some user-friendly and non-programming-background dependent decision-making tools. Thus, decision-makers are able to understand the insight of their problems easily without requirement of strong mathematical background. A case study in Johor, a southern state in Malaysia, which is endowed with extensive biomass resources, is used to demonstrate the effective of the proposed approaches.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: TP Chemical technology