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Production of Biochar Through Slow Pyrolysis of Biomass: Peat,Straw, Horse Manure and Sewage Sludge
KTH, School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health (CBH).
KTH, School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health (CBH).
2018 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

With a growing concern of climate change due to increased levels of CO2 in the atmosphere, carbon sequestration has been suggested as a possible solution for climate change mitigation. Biochar,a highly carbonaceous product produced through pyrolysis, is considered a viable option due to its content of stable carbon. This work covers the investigation of the possibility to produce biocharfrom four different feedstocks, namely peat, straw, horse manure and sewage sludge. The study includes a literature study and a five-week trial period at a 500 kW pilot plant, PYREG 500, in Högdalen. The thermal behaviour of the feedstocks, including garden waste, was investigated using thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The TGA results were used to decide the optimal pyrolysis temperature for peat and straw at the pilot plant. The TGA results showed that the feedstocks behave differently when pyrolysed; the mass loss rate as well as the final mass loss varied. Physiochemical characterisation of the biochar was completed and the results were in agreement with previous studies. The produced biochar from straw and two types of peat had a C content above50 wt.% (76.6, 80.7, 79.2 wt.%) and low molar ratios of H/C (0.33, 0.36, 0.38) and O/C (0.032,0.023, 0.024). The pH increased as a consequence of pyrolysis and the biochars were alkaline (pH10.1, 8.5, 8.3). Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were found in biochar from both strawand peat (8.26, 1.03, 5.83 mg/kg). In general, nutrients and heavy metals were concentrated in the biochar, except for Cd which decreased and Hg which could not be determined. The specific surface area of biochar from straw was considered small (21 m2/g) while biochar from peat had a higher specific surface area with a greater span (102-247 m2/g). The properties of the produced biochar were compared to the criteria included in the European Biochar Certificate and some of them were fulfilled, including the content of C, PAH and heavy metals. A flue gas analysis was completed when operating the pilot plant on straw pellets and it was showed that several emissions were released, including NO2, SOX, HCl and particulates, however, solely the emissions of NO2 exceed the regulations which will be applied in 2020. Regarding process design of a future pyrolysis plant, it is suggested that the means of material transport, particle separation, temperature control and quenching of biochar should be improved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. , p. 171
Keywords [en]
Biochar, slow pyrolysis, TGA, pilot plant, process design
National Category
Natural Sciences Other Natural Sciences Chemical Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-246042OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-246042DiVA, id: diva2:1295394
Available from: 2019-03-11 Created: 2019-03-11 Last updated: 2019-03-11Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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