Before proceeding to determine the meaning of the term biomass, it is necessary that we know its etymological origin. In this case, we can determine that it is a word of Greek origin since it is the result of the sum of two components of that language:
-The noun "bios", which can be translated as "life".
-The word "madza", which is synonymous with "mass".
The Royal Spanish Academy (RAE ) recognizes two great meanings of the term biomass . On the one hand, the concept refers to the organic material that is generated through a biological process (either induced or spontaneous) and that can be used to produce energy . On the other hand, biomass is the totality of matter of the organisms that live in a certain place, which is expressed in weight per unit volume or area.
The first meaning mentioned is the most popular, since it is used in the field of energy production. In this case, the idea is focused on the biomass that can be used to generate Energy .
The Radiant energy from the sun's rays, when it reaches our planet, it is absorbed by the plants. These living beings, through the process known as photosynthesis , convert said radiant energy into chemical energy . A portion of this energy is stored as organic matter: that biomass can be processed to harness the energy and transform it into gas .
In addition to all of the above, we cannot ignore the existence of two types of biomass fundamentally:
-The residual biomass. Within this category are forest residues, agricultural class, livestock, urban ...
No less relevant is knowing that, in recent years, it has opted to boost biomass forcefully. That is due to a series of factors that have led to it, among which the following stand out:
-There is a remarkable climate change.
-The price of oil becomes more expensive.
-There has been an increase in what is agricultural production and it is necessary to look for alternative uses to it.
-From the different governmental spheres it is betting on giving aid and subsidies to those who are encouraged to produce biomass.
Among the main advantages of biomass we can highlight the following:
-It is a type of renewable energy, that is, it comes from what are sources that are not only natural but also inexhaustible.
-It becomes a great tool to favor what is forest cleaning.
- It does not contaminate and, in addition, it is absolutely respectful with the environment.
Keep in mind that biomass is not only the part of organic matter that can be used to produce energy: there is also biomass that serves as fertilizer or that can be used as food . It is also important to consider that the link between biomass and useful energy varies according to different factors.
The simplest method to obtain energy from biomass is the direct combustion : for example, burning wood. The biofuels They are also made using the energy present in biomass, although the process is more complex.