Reaching Illinois State University's Heating Demand with Bioheat

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Jin Jo

Mentor Department



This research study evaluates and analyzes the feasibility of incorporating biofuel into Illinois State University's current heating system. Using biofuel as a heat source has potential to create lower heat energy production costs and may cause a decrease in the university's carbon emission level. Illinois State University spends a large amount of money to meet heating demands of campus buildings. Does biofuel have the potential to meet the heating demand of Illinois State University or can it be incorporated into the current system in effort to lower Illinois State University's heating expenses and decrease green house gas emissions; what would need to be done to meet the campus-heating demand while utilizing some input of bioheat? As fossil fuels and prices of other energy sources fluctuate Illinois State University should consider cleaner alternatives as demand grows. This study aims to display a full grasp around the significant trade-offs between gas fired steam boilers, boilers that run off a petroleum based heating oil, and boilers that use blends of biodiesel. This research plays an important role in shift away from fossil fuels to cleaner and renewable sources of energy, like biofuels. This research study presents alternative opportunities of heat production that could potentially mean a lower cost of energy or decreases in cost of operations. A complete technical, economical, and environmental analysis presents the possible steps that are necessary to successfully produce bioheat at Illinois State University.


Callahan-undergraduate, Vondruska-undergraduate

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