Estimating exergy renewability for sustainability assessment of corn ethanol

Christopher D. Cummings, Thomas P. Seager

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Although distinction between "renewable" and "non- renewable" energy resources has important political ramifications, in reality all practical energy production chains use a combination of resources that are renewable to different degrees. Current approaches to definition of renewability are overly simplistic and fail to account for weak formulations of sustainability that allow for substitution of resources. This research presents a mathematical model for assessing the renewability of corn ethanol-gasoline blends in terms of the number of years of production required to replace consumed resources with acceptable substitutes. Weak versus strong representations of sustainability are compared by variation of a substitutability parameter. The principal conclusion of this study is that ethanol blends are more rapidly renewable than petroleum-based gasoline, but that increasing the percentage of ethanol in the blend beyond about E20 results in only marginal improvements in renewability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2008 16th IEEE International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment, ISEE
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 22 2008
Externally publishedYes
Event2008 16th IEEE International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment, ISEE - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: May 19 2008May 22 2008

Publication series

NameIEEE International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment

Other

Other2008 16th IEEE International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment, ISEE
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA
Period5/19/085/22/08

Keywords

  • Energy resources
  • Ethanol
  • Exergy
  • Renewable energy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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  • Cite this

    Cummings, C. D., & Seager, T. P. (2008). Estimating exergy renewability for sustainability assessment of corn ethanol. In 2008 16th IEEE International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment, ISEE [4562893] (IEEE International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment). https://doi.org/10.1109/ISEE.2008.4562893