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Recycling of automobile shredder residue with a microwave pyrolysis combined with high temperature steam gasification
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Materials Science and Engineering, Energy and Furnace Technology.
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Materials Science and Engineering, Energy and Furnace Technology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1837-5439
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Materials Science and Engineering, Energy and Furnace Technology.
Stena Metall AB.
2010 (English)In: Journal of Hazardous Materials, ISSN 0304-3894, E-ISSN 1873-3336, Vol. 182, no 1-3, 80-89 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Presently, there is a growing need for handling automobile shredder residues - ASR or "car fluff". One of the most promising methods of treatment ASR is pyrolysis. Apart of obvious benefits of pyrolysis: energy and metals recovery, there is serious concern about the residues generated from that process needing to be recycled. Unfortunately, not much work has been reported providing a solution for treatment the wastes after pyrolysis. This work proposes a new system based on a two-staged process. The ASR was primarily treated by microwave pyrolysis and later the liquid and solid products become the feedstock for the high temperature gasification process. The system development is supported within experimental results conducted in a lab-scale, batch-type reactor at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH). The heating rate, mass loss, gas composition, LHV and gas yield of producer gas vs. residence time are reported for the steam temperature of 1173K. The sample input was 10 g and the steam flow rate was 0.65 kg/h. The conversion reached 99% for liquids and 45-55% for solids, dependently from the fraction. The H-2:CO mol/mol ratio varied from 1.72 solids and 1.4 for liquid, respectively. The average LHV of generated gas was 15.8 MJ/N m(3) for liquids and 15 MJ/N m(3) for solids fuels.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 182, no 1-3, 80-89 p.
Keyword [en]
ASR, High temperature steam gasification, HTAG, Microwave pyrolysis
National Category
Engineering and Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-26659DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2010.05.140ISI: 000282240800011ScopusID: 2-s2.0-77955574707OAI: diva2:373932
QC 20101202Available from: 2010-12-02 Created: 2010-11-26 Last updated: 2011-06-07Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Conversion of biomass and waste using highly preheated agents for materials and energy recovery
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Conversion of biomass and waste using highly preheated agents for materials and energy recovery
2011 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

One of the greatest challenges of human today is to provide the continuous and sustainable energy supply to the worldwide society. This shall be done while minimizing all the negative consequences of the operation(s) to the environment and its living habitants including human beings, taking from the whole life cycle perspective. In this thesis work new solutions for treatment biomass and waste are analyzed.


Based on the fundamental research on the conversion of various materials (biomass: straw pellets, wood pellets; and waste: plastic waste, ASR residues after pyrolysis), converted by means of different systems (pyrolysis in a fluidized bed reactor, gasification in a fixed-bed reactor using highly preheated agents) it is recommended to classify materials against their charring properties under pyrolysis, in order to find the best destination for a given type of fuel. 


Based on phenomenological research it was found that one of the important effects, affecting performance of downdraft gasifiers, is the pressure drop through the bed and grate. It affects, directly, the velocity profile, temperature distribution and of the height of the bed, especially for the grate with restricted passage surface, although it was not investigated in literature. The lower grate porosity, the higher conversion of fuel and heating value of gas is produced. However, the stability of the process is disturbed; therefore reducing the grate porosity below 20% is not recommended, unless the system is designed to overtake the consequences of the rising pressure inside the reactor. This work proposed the method for prediction of a total pressure drop through the fixed-bed downdraft gasifier equipped with a grate of certain porosity with an uncertainty of prediction ±7.10.  


Three systems have been proposed; one for the treatment of automotive shredder residue (ASR), one for the treatment of plastic waste (polyolefins) and one for biomass (wood/straw pellets). Pyrolysis is an attractive mean of conversion of non-charring materials (like plastic waste) into valuable hydrocarbons feedstock. It gives directly 15-30% gaseous olefins while the residue consisting of naphtha-like feedstock has to be reformed/upgraded to olefins or other chemicals (e.g. gasoline generation) using available petrochemical technologies. Pyrolysis of complex waste mixture such as ASR is an attractive waste pretreatment method before applying any further treatments, whereby useful products are generated (gaseous and liquid fuel) and char, rich in precious metals. The solid residues are meant for further treatment for energy and metals recovery. Gasification is a complementary method for handling pyrolysis residues. However, metals can be removed before gasification. Pyrolysis of charring materials, like biomass, is a very important step in thermo-chemical conversion. However, the char being approximately 25%wt. contains still very high caloric value of about 30MJ/kg. This in connection with the High Temperature Steam Gasification process is a very promising technology for biomass treatment, especially, above 900oC. This enhances the heat transfer towards the sample and accelerates kinetics of the gasification. This, in turn, improves the conversion of carbon to gas, increases the yield of the producer gas and reduces tar content. At higher steam to fuel ratio the process increases the yield of hydrogen, making it suitable for second-generation biofuels synthesis, whereas at lower steam to fuel ratio (S/F<2) the generated gas is of high calorific value making it suitable for power generation in a combined cycle.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2011. 115 p.
biomass, waste, pyrolysis, gasification, ASR
National Category
Metallurgy and Metallic Materials
Research subject
SRA - Energy
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-34253 (URN)ISBN 978-91-7501-033-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2011-06-15, D3 (entreplan), Lindstedtsvägen 5, KTH, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
QC 20110607Available from: 2011-06-07 Created: 2011-05-30 Last updated: 2011-12-12Bibliographically approved

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Donaj, PawelYang, WeihongBlasiak, Wlodzimierz
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