Combining harvest date and cutting height to optimize the sustainability of miscanthus production for energy in the mediterranean region

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Abstract

Miscanthus is a perennial energy grass and achieves high productivity under high summer temperatures, in the Mediterranean. Considering its sustainable production, the aim of this work was to evaluate the influence of harvest date and cutting height on the yields and biomass quality of Miscanthus for energy purposes. In this context, Miscanthus biomass from field studies in Portugal were sampled at three different harvest dates: September, November and January. For each harvest date, stems were separated into fractions of 50 cm. The fresh and dry weight of each fraction was recorded and the moisture, ash and nitrogen content were measured. Results indicate that higher yields are obtained in September and the higher the stubble height the lower the yields. On average, yields obtained in November and January are 20% lower than the September harvest. And increasing the stubble height to 50 cm decreases the yields by 30%. Yet, extending the harvest date to November and January improves the biomass quality for combustion. From September to November, on average, the moisture content decreases by 40% (from 50g to 30g H2O per 100g stems), the ash content of the stems decreases by 20% (from 3.5% to 2.7%, dry basis) and the nitrogen content of the stems decreases by 60% (from 0.19 % to 0.07%, dry basis). Increasing the stubble height from 0 to 50 cm does not influence the biomass quality. However, discarding the tops of the stems (fractions above 200cm), improves the biomass quality for combustion, once the ash content is reduced by 10% and the nitrogen content is reduced by 16%, while only 6% of yield loss is verified. The integrated analysis indicate that Miscanthus should be harvested in the period November-January, and that fractions above 200 cm should be left in the ground along with leaves, in order to improve the biomass quality and the soil nut rient status. In order to maximize the yield, the cutting height should be as low as possible given the constraints associated with the harvest machinery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-282
Number of pages3
JournalEuropean Biomass Conference and Exhibition Proceedings
Volume2017
Issue number25thEUBCE
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017

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Miscanthus
harvest date
Ashes
Mediterranean region
Sustainable development
Biomass
sustainability
energy
stem
stubble
biomass
stems
ash content
nitrogen content
ash
Nitrogen
combustion
Moisture
nitrogen
water content

Keywords

  • Biomass characterization
  • Biomass quality
  • Energy balance
  • Miscanthus
  • Sustainability

Cite this

@article{e3509bed8dff43b095d59e2850fa1cab,
title = "Combining harvest date and cutting height to optimize the sustainability of miscanthus production for energy in the mediterranean region",
abstract = "Miscanthus is a perennial energy grass and achieves high productivity under high summer temperatures, in the Mediterranean. Considering its sustainable production, the aim of this work was to evaluate the influence of harvest date and cutting height on the yields and biomass quality of Miscanthus for energy purposes. In this context, Miscanthus biomass from field studies in Portugal were sampled at three different harvest dates: September, November and January. For each harvest date, stems were separated into fractions of 50 cm. The fresh and dry weight of each fraction was recorded and the moisture, ash and nitrogen content were measured. Results indicate that higher yields are obtained in September and the higher the stubble height the lower the yields. On average, yields obtained in November and January are 20{\%} lower than the September harvest. And increasing the stubble height to 50 cm decreases the yields by 30{\%}. Yet, extending the harvest date to November and January improves the biomass quality for combustion. From September to November, on average, the moisture content decreases by 40{\%} (from 50g to 30g H2O per 100g stems), the ash content of the stems decreases by 20{\%} (from 3.5{\%} to 2.7{\%}, dry basis) and the nitrogen content of the stems decreases by 60{\%} (from 0.19 {\%} to 0.07{\%}, dry basis). Increasing the stubble height from 0 to 50 cm does not influence the biomass quality. However, discarding the tops of the stems (fractions above 200cm), improves the biomass quality for combustion, once the ash content is reduced by 10{\%} and the nitrogen content is reduced by 16{\%}, while only 6{\%} of yield loss is verified. The integrated analysis indicate that Miscanthus should be harvested in the period November-January, and that fractions above 200 cm should be left in the ground along with leaves, in order to improve the biomass quality and the soil nut rient status. In order to maximize the yield, the cutting height should be as low as possible given the constraints associated with the harvest machinery.",
keywords = "Biomass characterization, Biomass quality, Energy balance, Miscanthus, Sustainability",
author = "A. Fernando",
note = "This work was supported by the European Union (Project OPTIMA, Grant Agreement No: 289642, and MAGIC, Grant Agreement No: 727698).",
year = "2017",
month = "6",
language = "English",
volume = "2017",
pages = "280--282",
journal = "European Biomass Conference and Exhibition Proceedings",
issn = "2282-5819",
number = "25thEUBCE",

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Combining harvest date and cutting height to optimize the sustainability of miscanthus production for energy in the mediterranean region

AU - Fernando, A.

N1 - This work was supported by the European Union (Project OPTIMA, Grant Agreement No: 289642, and MAGIC, Grant Agreement No: 727698).

PY - 2017/6

Y1 - 2017/6

N2 - Miscanthus is a perennial energy grass and achieves high productivity under high summer temperatures, in the Mediterranean. Considering its sustainable production, the aim of this work was to evaluate the influence of harvest date and cutting height on the yields and biomass quality of Miscanthus for energy purposes. In this context, Miscanthus biomass from field studies in Portugal were sampled at three different harvest dates: September, November and January. For each harvest date, stems were separated into fractions of 50 cm. The fresh and dry weight of each fraction was recorded and the moisture, ash and nitrogen content were measured. Results indicate that higher yields are obtained in September and the higher the stubble height the lower the yields. On average, yields obtained in November and January are 20% lower than the September harvest. And increasing the stubble height to 50 cm decreases the yields by 30%. Yet, extending the harvest date to November and January improves the biomass quality for combustion. From September to November, on average, the moisture content decreases by 40% (from 50g to 30g H2O per 100g stems), the ash content of the stems decreases by 20% (from 3.5% to 2.7%, dry basis) and the nitrogen content of the stems decreases by 60% (from 0.19 % to 0.07%, dry basis). Increasing the stubble height from 0 to 50 cm does not influence the biomass quality. However, discarding the tops of the stems (fractions above 200cm), improves the biomass quality for combustion, once the ash content is reduced by 10% and the nitrogen content is reduced by 16%, while only 6% of yield loss is verified. The integrated analysis indicate that Miscanthus should be harvested in the period November-January, and that fractions above 200 cm should be left in the ground along with leaves, in order to improve the biomass quality and the soil nut rient status. In order to maximize the yield, the cutting height should be as low as possible given the constraints associated with the harvest machinery.

AB - Miscanthus is a perennial energy grass and achieves high productivity under high summer temperatures, in the Mediterranean. Considering its sustainable production, the aim of this work was to evaluate the influence of harvest date and cutting height on the yields and biomass quality of Miscanthus for energy purposes. In this context, Miscanthus biomass from field studies in Portugal were sampled at three different harvest dates: September, November and January. For each harvest date, stems were separated into fractions of 50 cm. The fresh and dry weight of each fraction was recorded and the moisture, ash and nitrogen content were measured. Results indicate that higher yields are obtained in September and the higher the stubble height the lower the yields. On average, yields obtained in November and January are 20% lower than the September harvest. And increasing the stubble height to 50 cm decreases the yields by 30%. Yet, extending the harvest date to November and January improves the biomass quality for combustion. From September to November, on average, the moisture content decreases by 40% (from 50g to 30g H2O per 100g stems), the ash content of the stems decreases by 20% (from 3.5% to 2.7%, dry basis) and the nitrogen content of the stems decreases by 60% (from 0.19 % to 0.07%, dry basis). Increasing the stubble height from 0 to 50 cm does not influence the biomass quality. However, discarding the tops of the stems (fractions above 200cm), improves the biomass quality for combustion, once the ash content is reduced by 10% and the nitrogen content is reduced by 16%, while only 6% of yield loss is verified. The integrated analysis indicate that Miscanthus should be harvested in the period November-January, and that fractions above 200 cm should be left in the ground along with leaves, in order to improve the biomass quality and the soil nut rient status. In order to maximize the yield, the cutting height should be as low as possible given the constraints associated with the harvest machinery.

KW - Biomass characterization

KW - Biomass quality

KW - Energy balance

KW - Miscanthus

KW - Sustainability

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M3 - Article

VL - 2017

SP - 280

EP - 282

JO - European Biomass Conference and Exhibition Proceedings

JF - European Biomass Conference and Exhibition Proceedings

SN - 2282-5819

IS - 25thEUBCE

ER -