Technologies of Biomass Exploitation

This course is part of the programme
Bachelor's programme in Environment (first cycle)

Objectives and competences

The primary goal of this course is to give students the knowledge in the area of biomass treatment and management. The student is able to calculate how much biomass can be acquired in certain areas, the amount of energy necessary for biomass growth and preparation and the amount of energy gained from biomass. More over, the student is able to assess the treatment procedure efficiencies and their economic feasibilities.


Basic knowledge of concepts from biology, chemistry physics and economy.


• Overview of biomass resources, definition of exploitation pathways: biofuels, biomass, raw material
• Biofuels of first, second, third and fourth generation
• Biogas, bioethanol, biodiesel production
• Exploitation of wood biomass for raw material resource
• Composting
• Mass and energy balances of biofuels production (areal yield, production yield, parasitic energy demand, biofuels comparison …)
• Environmental impacts of biomass and biofuel production
• Economic balances of biofuels production and raw material production (ordinances overview, renewable energy subsidies, legal and economic aspects of biomass exploitation …)
• Advanced – CO2 negative biomass production processes (algae biomass, CO2 capture and storage …

Intended learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding:
After successfully passing the examination, students will have the following knowledge:
• calculation for biomass acquisition from waste or energy plants;
• calculation on Wood biomass acquisition;
• calculation on Energy yields of biomass treatment procedures, biogas, bioethanol, biodiesel quantities;
• calculation of Energy and mass balances of treatment procedures, efficiencies and outcomes;
• biomass policies and incentives;
• calculation of economic feasibility for certain procedures for biofuels processing, from first to fourth generation biofuels;
• practical notion of how an environmentally safe, energetically efficient and economically feasible treatment management should look like.


• Professional and scientific journal articles from Biomass & Bioenergy (ISSN 0961-9534) E-version ; Bioresource Technology E-version and other journals
• How much bioenergy can Europe produce without harming the environment? / prepared by Tobias Wiesenthal [et al.]; European Environment Agency, Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, cop. 2006. Catalogue E-version
• ROŠ, Milenko, ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago. Organic farm waste and municipal sludge. V: KOLE, Chittaranjan (ur.), JOSHI, Chandrashekhar P. (ur.), SHONNARD, David R. (ur.). Handbook of bioenergy crop plants. Boca Raton (FL); London; New York: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis group, 2012, str. 747-792.
• ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago, GRILC, Viktor. Anaerobic treatment and biogas production from organic waste. V: KUMAR, Sunil (ur.). Management of organic waste. Rijeka: InTech, 2012, str. 3-28. E-version
• Energija in okolje: obnovljivi viri energije / Sašo Medved, Ciril Arkar, Ljubljana : Zdravstvena fakulteta: Projekt Concerto Remining-Lowex, 2009. Catalogue


  • Grading successful relevant data gathering in homework and presentation of homework (50 %) * Grading seminar work and seminar work presentation (30 %) * Written exam where calculation of cases is necessary (20 %)

Lecturer's references

Associate Professor of Environmental Protection at the University of Nova Gorica

  1. KALUŽA, Leon, ŠUŠTARŠIČ, Matej, RUTAR, Vera, ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago. The re-use of Waste-Activated Sludge as part of a "zero-sludge" strategy for wastewater treatments in the pulp and paper industry. Bioresource technology, ISSN 0960-8524. [Print ed.], 2014, vol. 151, str. 137-143, doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2013.10.041. [COBISS.SI-ID2945275]
  2. ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago, ŠKRJANEC, Igor, MARINŠEK-LOGAR, Romana. Anaerobic co-digestion of excess brewery yeast in a granular biomass reactor to enhance the production of biomethane. Bioresource technology, ISSN 0960-8524. [Print ed.], 2012, vol. 124, str. 328-337, ilustr., doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2012.08.064. [COBISS.SI-ID 3102344]
  3. CUKJATI, Nevenka, ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago, ROŠ, Milenko, GRILC, Viktor. Composting of anaerobic sludge : an economically feasible element of a sustainable sewage sludge management. Journal of environmental management, ISSN 0301-4797, 2012, vol. 106, str. 48-55. [COBISS.SI-ID 4943130]
  4. ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago, ROŠ, Milenko. Determination of chemical oxygen demand in substrates from anaerobic treatmentof solid organic waste : Elektronski vir. Waste and biomass valorization, ISSN 1877-265X. [Spletna izd.], 2012, no. 1, vol. 3, str. 89-98. [COBISS.SI-ID 4911130]
  5. ZUPANČIČ, Gregor Drago, JEMEC, Anita. Anaerobic digestion of tannery waste : semi-continuous and anaerobic sequencing batch reactor processe. Bioresource technology, ISSN 0960-8524. [Print ed.], 2010, vol. 101, no. 1, str. 26-33. http://www.sciencedirect. com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6V24-4X24BYF-1&_user=634399&_coverDate=08%2F21%2F2009&_alid=995915539&_rdoc=1&_fmt=high&_orig=search&_cdi=5 692&_sort=r&_st=4&_docanchor=&_ct=1&_acct=C000033678&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=634399&md5=2f77d4531c15321e387dcb232571213e, doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2009.07.028. [COBISS.SI-ID 4220698]