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Dependency of production planning on availability of thermal energy in commercial greenhouses
Lookup NU author(s)
Dr Barbara Sturm
Professor Tony Roskilly
Sturm B, Royapoor M, Maier M, Joyce S, Wang YD, Roskilly AP
Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)
International Conference on Applied Energy (ICAE)
Year of Conference
5-8 July 2012
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Due to growing concerns over climate change and rising energy costs, energy efficiency in industrial applications and use of renewable energy sources for energy supply have gained growing importance. Furthermore the potential for the recovery of low grade waste heat has become a subject of a multitude of scientific and industrial studies. Commercial greenhouses are often seen as the optimum heat dump for very low grade waste heat. Availability, temperature levels and fluctuations in the availability of heat necessitate a very different approach towards production planning as compared to traditional systems where energy supply is adapted to production demand and not converse. In the study presented here, a commercial ornamental plant nursery that switched its heat source from natural gas to utilizing the waste heat of a nearby commercial CHP system in 2007 was analyzed. During the study, the differences between production planning and temperature regimes before and after switching to waste were compared. The results of the study undertaken show that greenhouses present a good opportunity for the use of the low grade waste heat but that production needs to be planned very carefully to enable the production high quality plants and that traditional cultivation planning is unsuitable for such approaches.
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