Investigating the potential for a self-sustaining slow pyrolysis system under varying operating conditions

Kyle Crombie, Ondrej Masek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This work aimed to investigate the impact of highest treatment temperature (HTT), heating rate, carrier gas flow rate and feedstock on the composition and energy content of pyrolysis gas to assess whether a self-sustained system could be achieved through the combustion of the gas fraction alone, leaving other co-products available for alternative high-value uses. Calculations based on gas composition showed that the pyrolysis process could be sustained by the energy contained within the pyrolysis gases alone. The lower energy limit (6% biomass higher heating value (HHV)) was surpassed by pyrolysis at ⩾450 °C while only a HTT of 650 °C consistently met the upper energy limit (15% biomass HHV). These findings fill an important gap in literature related to the energy balance of the pyrolysis systems for biochar production, and show that, at least from an energy balance perspective; self-sustained slow pyrolysis for co-production of biochar and liquid products is feasible.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-156
JournalBioresource technology
Volume162
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Biochar
  • Pyrolysis
  • BIOENERGY

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