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Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility Essay


Main Article Review

This review relates to the article by Greg Holt, James Simonton, and Mario Beruvides titled “Engineering Economic Analysis of a Cotton By-Product Fuel Pellet Operation”. The authors carried out an economic analysis to determine the viability of the establishing waste-to-energy plants to process waste from cotton factories. The research project’s objective was to examine the economic feasibility of establishing a cotton-pellet production facility to produce fuel pellets for industrial pellet burners (Greg, Simonton and Beruvides 2). They hoped that such a solution would reduce the energy footprint of the cotton ginning process and offset the greenhouse gas emissions associated with cotton production.

The main points the authors raised were as follows. First, they observed that the total waste from the cotton ginning process in 2001 in the US was 3.2 million tons. This waste had the potential of producing energy to reduce the energy footprint of the cotton production process. Secondly, the authors observed that there was a constant stream of waste from the cotton industry. In this regard, the authors were convinced that waste from ginneries was a reliable source of raw materials for making fuel pellets. The third point made by the authors was to list the project components needed for the execution of this project as raw materials, labor, operating expenses, and transport. They went on to calculate the contribution of each of these factors in the project.

The authors concluded that the project was viable based on two reasons. The first reason was the potential reduction of the energy footprint of the cotton industry in the country by offsetting the energy consumed by the industry. The second reason was the reduction of the cost of production of cotton because of savings derived from cheaper energy.

Lessons from Additional Article Reviewed

The comparison of the main article reviewed above with an article titled “The journey from Cost to Value” by Michael Dallas revealed several similarities and differences. First, both articles dealt with process improvement. The purpose of the second article was to give a report regarding revenue engineering in a UK firm called Davis Langdon & Everest (Dallas 9). Secondly, both articles dealt with the measurement of value. In the first article, the main concern of the researchers was how to get more value from the waste produced during cotton processing. In the second article, the main concern of the authors was how to get more value from engineering projects. The main difference between the two articles was the approach chosen by the researchers to deal with the subject matter. In the first case, the authors tested their hypothesis by conducting simulations. In the second article, the authors were reporting on the state of value engineering in the UK.

The third article dealt with risk management in large projects. The authors used the Monte Carlo simulation as the basis of risk management calculations for large engineering projects (Duffey and Dorp 1). The main similarity between this article and the first article was that they both developed economic models. In the first case, the model in question was an economic appraisal for determining the economic viability of pellet manufacturing facilities. In the second case, the model was for estimating the risks associated with large engineering projects. On the other hand, the two projects differed because of the intended applications of each project. In the first case, the writers wanted to test whether it would be economically viable to set up a production facility for manufacturing pellets from ginnery waste. This verification was a part of the preliminary process involved in the development of the facilities. On the other hand, the article on risk management provided a final solution for use in any large engineering project.

Reflection on Lessons from Articles Reviewed

The main issues that come to mind based on the review of these articles are as follows. First, the purpose of an engineering economics study varies from situation to situation. These studies may answer practical business problems such as whether it is viable to construct a facility, or may deal with the planning aspects such as risk management in a project. This goes to show that skills in engineering economics are very valuable in many sectors.

Secondly, the methods and approaches used in engineering economics vary depending on the need. Each of the three articles used a different approach to deal with its research questions. The main lesson in this regard is that there is a need to adapt methods to suit the demands of a project. In fact, it is important to have a wide choice of methods because it allows an engineer to decide on the best approach for solving each problem.

The third lesson from this review is that it is vital to read widely in order to fill knowledge gaps. For instance, an engineer will not learn about cotton ginning during training. However, an engineer needs this knowledge to carry out an economic evaluation for such a project. Therefore, an effective engineering economist must develop research skills and must have the drive to learn about other fields.

Works Cited

Dallas, Michael. “The Journey from Cost to Value.” Journal of Value Management 6.3 (2002): 8-12. Print.

Duffey, M R and J R Dorp. “Risk Analysis for Large Engineering Projects: Modeling Cost Uncertainty.” Journal of Engineering Valuation and Cost Analysis 23.1 (2000): 285-301. Print.

Greg, Holt, James Simonton and Mario Beruvides. “Engineering Economic Analysis of a Cotton By-Product Fuel Pellet Operation.” Journal of Cotton Science 11.3 (2003): 205-216. Print.

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IvyPanda. (2020, July 23). Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/cotton-pellet-production-facility-feasibility/

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"Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility." IvyPanda, 23 July 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/cotton-pellet-production-facility-feasibility/.

1. IvyPanda. "Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility." July 23, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/cotton-pellet-production-facility-feasibility/.


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IvyPanda. "Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility." July 23, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/cotton-pellet-production-facility-feasibility/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility." July 23, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/cotton-pellet-production-facility-feasibility/.

References

IvyPanda. (2020) 'Cotton-Pellet Production Facility Feasibility'. 23 July.

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