Energy Systems Analysis
Scion has extensive capability in analysing complex systems. Scientific analysis is important when developing new process technologies because it provides performance indicators and identifies areas for improvement.
At Scion we use a variety of analysis methods such as cost analysis, life-cycle assessment, and energy modelling.
These methods help us evaluate an overall process in terms of its economic viability, environmental impact, and energy efficiency.
We have applied these methodologies to many different energy systems, including wood processing, waste water treatment, and biofuel production.
Evaluating thermodynamic efficiency
Scion is particularly interested in using sophisticated energy modelling techniques to evaluate the thermodynamic efficiency of energy systems.
A complete thermodynamic analysis includes an energy balance, where all the energy inputs and outputs are identified, but also accounts for the quality and usefulness of different forms of energy.
Analysing the energy quality gives us fundamental theoretical limits on energy system performance.
This helps us pinpoint inefficient processes in the system so that we can focus our research efforts strategically and improve in the overall energy system performance.
Converting woody biomass
Scion has identified woody biomass as one of New Zealand’s most significant renewable energy resources and assists in the development of conversion technologies.
As existing energy resources become scarce it will be increasingly important to use our biomass resources in the best possible way. This means maximising the thermodynamic efficiency of our biomass conversion technologies and ensuring that our systems are both renewable and sustainable.
We are using our expertise in energy systems analysis to drive research and technology development and provide the greatest overall benefit to New Zealand from our biomass resources.