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Application of Agent-Based Modeling in Multi-Source Biomass Supply Chain Purchase Planning and Scheduling for a Power Plant


Application of Agent-Based Modeling in Multi-Source Biomass Supply Chain Purchase Planning and Scheduling for a Power Plant

Esmaeilzadeh, Sahar (2018) Application of Agent-Based Modeling in Multi-Source Biomass Supply Chain Purchase Planning and Scheduling for a Power Plant. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Esmaeilzadeh_MASc_F2018.pdf - Accepted Version
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Renewable energies play a pivotal role in social, political and environmental affairs of every country. Numerous reports state that among all the renewable options, biomass is one of the most sustainable alternatives. However, biomass-fired energy plants face several unintended potential consequences. The cost and risk burden on facility managers is an issue given the lack of historical data on life-cycle operation and maintenance of technologies.
With the advancement of computational capabilities, Agent-Based Modeling and Simulation (ABMS) is rapidly replacing conventional simulation techniques. Creating a successful simulation model can support the enhancement of logistical efficiency. The most common simulation technique used in biomass supply chain management is System Dynamics (SD). SD modeling in nature is highly abstract and therefore inadequate to consider the complete biomass supply chain structure and all related detail and information.
Agent-Based Modeling and Simulation (ABMS) can act as an add-on to complement SD simulation method. In this thesis, the fundamentals of ABMS are combined with SD simulation technique in order to overcome many limitations of current modeling and simulation practices. ABMS is a bottom-up modeling techniques where actors and participants of the system are given attributes and their behavior is encoded as a set of rules. Currently the applications of ABMS in biomass supply chain management is limited and few in numbers, however, this technique is gaining the interest of many specially in the field related to supply chain management.
A simulation model for the process of biomass purchase scheduling, planning and management for a power plant is developed. The model establishes a holistic approach in absence of knowledge of BSC system’s behavior and provides a reusable base that facilitates modeling various scenarios and measuring their performance through simulation. To address the challenges, four different scenarios have been designed and implemented. First scenario analyzes the outputs of the system in case of an increase in the scale of the operation. In the second scenario, the acceptable biomass types have been limited to only woody and high quality types. In the third scenario, storage method has been improved and combined with hot air treatment method. As for the forth scenario, ambient storage method as the cheapest method with high deterioration rate has been investigated. The results of these scenarios have been reported and individually evaluated. By conducting a comparison analysis between these scenarios and the base scenario, their advantages and disadvantages have been assessed. The third scenario is identified as the most favorable.

Divisions:Concordia University > Gina Cody School of Engineering and Computer Science > Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Esmaeilzadeh, Sahar
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A. Sc.
Program:Civil Engineering
Date:30 August 2018
Thesis Supervisor(s):Nasiri, Fuzhan and Mafakheri, Fereshteh
ID Code:984214
Deposited By: Sahar Esmaeilzadeh
Deposited On:16 Nov 2018 15:53
Last Modified:16 Nov 2018 15:53
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