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Publikationen


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Analysis of H2S-related short-term degradation and regeneration of anode- and electrolyte supported solid oxide fuel cells fueled with biomass steam gasifier product gas

Pongratz G, Subotić V, Schroettner H, Hochenauer C, Skrzypkiewicz M, Kupecki J, Anca-Couce A, Scharler R. Analysis of H2S-related short-term degradation and regeneration of anode- and electrolyte supported solid oxide fuel cells fueled with biomass steam gasifier product gas. Energy.2021.218:119556.

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Using solid oxide fuel cells in biomass gasification based combined heat and power production is a promising option to increase electrical efficiency of the system. For an economically viable design of gas cleaning units, fuel cell modules and further development of suitable degradation detection methods, information about the behavior of commercially available cell designs during short-term poisoning with H2S can be crucial. This work presents short-term degradation and regeneration analyses of industrial-relevant cell designs with different anode structure and sulfur tolerance fueled with synthetic product gas from wood steam gasification containing 1 to 10 ppmv of H2S at 750°C and 800°C. Full performance regeneration of both cell types was achieved in all operating points. The high H2O content and avoided fuel depletion may have contributed to a lower performance degradation and better regeneration of the cells. A strong influence of the catalytically active anode volume on poisoning and regeneration behavior was quantified, thereby outlining the importance of considering the anode structure besides the sulfur tolerance of the anode material. Hence, cells with less sulfur tolerant anode material but larger anode volume might outperform cells less sensitive to sulfur in the case of an early detection of a gas cleaning malfunction.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Bioenergy technologies, uses, market and future trends with Austria as a case study

Anca-Couce A, Hochenauer C, Scharler R. Bioenergy technologies, uses, market and future trends with Austria as a case study. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews.2021;135:110237.

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The current bioenergy uses and conversion technologies as well as future trends for the production of heat, power, fuels and chemicals from biomass are reviewed. The focus is placed in Austria, which is selected due to its high bioenergy utilization, providing 18.4% of the gross energy final consumption in 2017, and its strong industrial and scientific position in the field. The most common bioenergy application in Austria is bioheat with 170 PJ in 2017 mainly obtained from woody biomass combustion, followed by biofuels with 21 PJ and bioelectricity with 17 PJ. Bioheat has a stable market, where Austrian manufacturers of boilers and stoves have a strong position exporting most of their production. Future developments in bioheat production should go in the line of further reducing emissions, increasing feedstock flexibility and coupling with other renewables. For bioelectricity and biofuels, the current framework does not promote the growth of the current main technologies, i.e. combined heat and power (CHP) based on biomass combustion or biogas and first generation biofuels. However, an increase in all bioenergy uses is required to achieve the Austrian plan to be climate neutral in 2040. The current initiatives and future possibilities to achieve this increase are presented and discussed, e.g. mandatory substitution of old oil boilers, production of biomethane and early commercialization of CHP with a high efficiency or demonstration of advanced biofuels production based on gasification.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Correlations between tar content and permanent gases as well as reactor temperature in a lab-scale fluidized bed biomass gasifier applying different feedstock and operating conditions

von Berg L, Pongratz G, Pilatov A, Almuina-Villar H, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Correlations between tar content and permanent gases as well as reactor temperature in a lab-scale fluidized bed biomass gasifier applying different feedstock and operating conditions.Fuel.2021.305:121531

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The major problem of fluidized bed biomass gasification is the high tar contamination of the producer gas which is associated with the complex and time-consuming sampling and analysis of these tars. Therefore, correlations to predict the tar content are a helpful tool for the development and operation of biomass gasifiers. Correlations between tars and gas composition as well as reactor temperature derived for a steam-blown lab-scale bubbling fluidized bed gasifier are investigated in this study to assess their applicability. A comprehensive data set containing over 80 experimental points was obtained for various operation conditions, including variations in temperature from 700 to 800 °C, feedstock, amount of steam for fluidization, as well as the addition of oxygen. Linear correlations between tar and permanent gases show good accuracy for H2 and CH4 when using pure steam. However, experiments conducted with steam-oxygen mixtures show high deviations for the CH4-based correlation and smaller but still significant deviations for the H2-based correlation. No relation between tar and CO or CO2 was found. The correlation between tar and temperature shows highest accuracy, including good agreement with the steam-oxygen experiments. All tar correlations showed useful results over a broad operating range. However, significant deviations can be obtained when considering just one gas compound. Therefore, a combination of different correlations considering gas components and temperature seems to be the best method of tar prediction. This leads to a powerful tool for fast online tar monitoring for a broad range of operating conditions, once a calibration measurement was conducted.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Emission minimization of a top-lit updraft gasifier cookstove based on experiments and detailed CFD analyses

Scharler R, Archan G, Rakos C, von Berg L, Lello D, Hochenauer C, Anca-Couce A. Emission minimization of a top-lit updraft gasifier cookstove based on experiments and detailed CFD analyses. Energy Conversion and Management. 2021.247:114755.

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Around 2.7 billion people worldwide have no access to clean cooking equipment, which leads to major health problems due to high emissions of unburned products (VOC, CO and soot). A top-lit updraft gasifier cookstove with forced draft was identified as the technology with the highest potential for reducing harmful emissions from incomplete combustion in simple cookstoves. The basic variant of the stove was equipped with a fan for efficient mixing of product gas with air and fired with pellets to increase the energy density of low-grade residues. The development was conducted based on water boiling test experiments for wood and rice hull pellets and targeted CFD simulations of flow, heat transfer and gas phase combustion with a comprehensive description of the reaction kinetics, which were validated by the experiments. Emphasis was put on the reduction of CO emissions as an indicator for the burnout quality of the flue gas. The optimisation was carried out in several steps, the main improvements being the design of a sufficiently large post-combustion chamber and a supply of an appropriate amount of primary air for a more stable fuel gasification. The experiments showed CO emissions <0.2 g/MJdel for wood and rice hull pellets, which corresponds to a reduction by a factor of about 15 to 20 compared to the basic forced draft stove concept. Furthermore, these values are between 5 and 10 times lower than published water boiling test results of the best available cookstove technologies and are already close to the range of automatic pellet furnaces for domestic heating, which are considered to be the benchmark for the best possible reduction of CO emissions.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Modelling fuel flexibility in fixed-bed biomass conversion with a low primary air ratio in an updraft configuration

Anca-Couce A, Archan G, Buchmayr M, Essl M, Hochenauer C, Scharler R. Modelling fuel flexibility in fixed-bed biomass conversion with a low primary air ratio in an updraft configuration. Fuel. 2021.296:120687.

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Fixed-bed biomass conversion with a low primary air ratio and a counter-current configuration has a high feedstock flexibility, as it resembles updraft gasification, and the potential to reduce emissions when integrated in biomass combustion systems. A 1D bed model was validated with experimental results from a biomass combustion boiler with such a bed conversion system, predicting with a good accuracy the temperatures in the reactor and producer gas composition. The model was applied for different cases to investigate the fuel flexibility of this combustion system, including the influence of moisture content and the maximum temperatures achieved in the bed. It was shown that with variations in fuel moisture content from 8 to 30% mass w.b. the producer gas composition, char reduction to CO or maximum temperatures at the grate were not affected due to the separation of the char conversion and pyrolysis/drying zones. Flue gas recirculation was the only possible measure with the tested configuration to reduce the maximum temperatures close to the grate, which is beneficial e.g. to avoid slagging with complicated fuels. A higher tar content was obtained than in conventional updraft gasifiers, which is attributed to the absence of tar condensation in the bed due to the limited height of the reactor and the integration in the combustion chamber. The presented model can support the development of such combustion technologies and is a relevant basis for detailed CFD simulations of the bed or gas phase conversion.


Conference Papers | 2020

Advanced modular process analysis tool for biomass-based Chemical Looping systems

Steiner T, Schulze K, Scharler R. Advanced modular process analysis tool for biomass-based Chemical Looping systems. 3RD DOCTORAL COLLOQUIUM BIOENERGY. 2020.

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In order to limit global warming to 1.5 °C compared to the pre-industrial temperature level, zero net CO2 emissions are needed on a global scale until 2050. A Chemical Looping (CL) process represents a technological system which is CO2-negative when using biomass as fuel and thus can substantially contribute to this target. In principle, the process uses a metal oxide as oxygen carrier material (OC) which is cyclically oxidized by air or steam and reduced by the fuel. Without air as the direct oxygen source for fuel conversion, high calorific product gases or pure carbon dioxide in case of combustion are obtained after the condensation of water vapor, which can then be stored or further utilized.
Within the funded project ”BIO-LOOP”, different Chemical Looping processes (for example combustion, gasification, hydrogen production) and reactors (fixed bed, fluidized bed) are investigated numerically and experimentally. An advanced process analysis tool based on mass and energy balances of the system considered will be presented. It provides data about the specific internal and external streams, process conditions and efficiencies. Within the analysis tool, various independent modular units describe individual process steps, e.g. mixing, chemical reaction or splitting. These components can be adjusted, combined and interconnected according to the flow chart of the system. The process model represents the first step towards a flexible Chemical Looping reactor simulation toolbox to analyze various process scenarios. Emphasis is put on the flexibility regarding the fuels and oxygen carriers, their conversion and possible process variations. The tool developed will support upcoming CFD modeling and further economic considerations.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Biomass pyrolysis TGA assessment with an international round robin

Anca-Couce A, Tsekos C, Retschitzegger S, Zimbardi F, Funke A, Banks S, Kraia T, Marques P, Scharler R, de Jong W, Kienzl N. Biomass pyrolysis TGA assessment with an international round robin.Fuel.2020;276:118002.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fuel.2020.118002

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The large variations found in literature for the activation energy values of main biomass compounds (cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin) in pyrolysis TGA raise concerns regarding the reliability of both the experimental and the modelling side of the performed works. In this work, an international round robin has been conducted by 7 partners who performed TGA pyrolysis experiments of pure cellulose and beech wood at several heating rates. Deviations of around 20 – 30 kJ/mol were obtained in the activation energies of cellulose, hemicellulose and conversions up to 0.9 with beech wood when considering all experiments. The following method was employed to derive reliable kinetics: to first ensure that pure cellulose pyrolysis experiments from literature can be accurately reproduced, and then to conduct experiments at different heating rates and evaluate them with isoconversional methods to detect experiments that are outliers and to validate the reliability of the derived kinetics and employed reaction models with a fitting routine. The deviations in the activation energy values for the cases that followed this method, after disregarding other cases, were of 10 kJ/mol or lower, except for lignin and very high conversions. This method is therefore proposed in order to improve the consistency of data acquisition and kinetic analysis of TGA for biomass pyrolysis in literature, reducing the reported variability.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Correction to: Investigation of solid oxide fuel cell operation with synthetic biomass gasification product gases as a basis for enhancing its performance

Pongratz G, Subotić V, Schroettner H, Stoeckl B, Hochenauer C, Anca-Couce A, Scharler R. Correction to: Investigation of solid oxide fuel cell operation with synthetic biomass gasification product gases as a basis for enhancing its performance. Biomass Conversion and Biorefinery. 2020

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The authors want to acknowledge, that during the production of the final version of the publication the image for Figure 9 has been replaced with the image for Figure 12, however without changing the content of the paper. This issue is resolved in the current version of the publication.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Detailed experimental investigation of the spatially distributed gas release and bed temperatures in fixed-bed biomass combustion with low oxygen concentration

Archan G, Anca-Couce A, Gregorc J, Buchmayr M, Hochenauer C, Gruber J, Scharler R. Detailed experimental investigation of the spatially distributed gas release and bed temperatures in fixed-bed biomass combustion with low oxygen concentration. Biomass and Bioenergy. 2020;141:105725

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This publication focuses on the experimental investigation of a novel small-scale fuel flexible biomass combustion technology with a fixed-bed employing a low oxygen concentration. It was obtained through a low primary air ratio and the additional supply of recirculated flue gas. The plant was operated with spruce wood chips, which contained three different mass fractions of water, and miscanthus pellets. All relevant components of the released gas above the fixed-bed were measured, as well as the 3D bed temperature distribution. The balances confirmed a high experimental data consistency. Therefore, it was possible to determine the location of the four different conversion zones inside the fixed-bed: drying, pyrolysis, char gasification and char oxidation. The reduction of CO2 to CO in the char reduction zone worked efficiently across the entire grate area. Furthermore, the results showed that the water mass fraction of the fuel did not influence the dry product gas composition, but significantly affected the location for the release of pyrolysis products such as tars. It was found that the low oxygen concentration in the fixed-bed combined with flue gas recirculation was an effective method to reduce bed temperatures and therefore its inorganic emissions while significantly increasing feedstock flexibility. The investigations provided fundamental findings on the conversion and release behavior of the new technology under real operating conditions and are very useful for further experimental work and CFD simulations targeting the reduction of PM and NOX emissions.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Evaluation of heat transfer models at various fluidization velocities for biomass pyrolysis conducted in a bubbling fluidized bed

von Berg L, Soria-Verdugo A, Hochenauer C, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Evaluation of heat transfer models at various fluidization velocities for biomass pyrolysis conducted in a bubbling fluidized bed. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 2020;160:120175

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Four different models for heat transfer to the particles immersed in a fluidized bed were evaluated and implemented into an existing single particle model. Pyrolysis experiments have been conducted using a fluidized bed installed on a balance at different temperatures and fluidization velocities using softwood pellets. Using a heat transfer model applicable for fluidized beds, the single particle model was able to predict the experimental results of mass loss obtained in this study as well as experimental data from literature with a reasonable accuracy. A good agreement between experimental and modeling results was found for different reactor temperatures and configurations as well as different biomass types, particle sizes – in the typical range of pellets - and fluidization velocities when they were higher than . However, significant deviations were found for fluidization velocities close to minimum fluidization. Heat transfer models which consider the influence of fluidization velocity show a better agreement in this case although differences are still present.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Investigation of solid oxide fuel cell operation with synthetic biomass gasification product gases as a basis for enhancing its performance

Pongratz G, Subotić V, Schroettner H, Stoeckl B, Hochenauer C, Anca-Couce A, Scharler R. Investigation of solid oxide fuel cell operation with synthetic biomass gasification product gases as a basis for enhancing its performance. Biomass Conversion and Biorefinery.2020.

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Solid oxide fuel cells represent a promising technology to increase the electrical efficiency of biomass-based combined-heat-power systems in comparison to state-of-the-art gas engines, additionally providing high temperature heat. To identify favorable fuel gas compositions for an efficient coupling with gasifiers at low degradation risk is of major importance to ensure stability, reliability, and durability of the systems used, thus increasing attractiveness of electricity production from biomass. Therefore, this study presents a comprehensive analysis on the influence of main gas components from biomass gasification on the performance and efficiency of a cell relevant for real application. An industrial-size electrolyte supported single cell with nickel/gadolinium-doped ceria anode was selected showing high potential for gasifier-solid oxide fuel cell systems. Beneficial gas component ratios enhancing the power output and electric efficiency are proposed based on the experimental study performed. Furthermore, the degradation stability of a SOFC fueled with a synthetic product gas representing steam gasification of woody biomass was investigated. After 500 h of operation under load at a steam-to-carbon ratio of 2.25 in the fuel gas, no performance or anode degradation could be detected.


Conference Papers | 2020

Numerical simulation of fuel nitrogen conversion and NOx emissions in biomass boilers with advanced air staging technology

Essl M, Schulze K, Scharler R. Numerical simulation of fuel nitrogen conversion and NOx emissions in biomass boilers with advanced air staging technology. 3RD DOCTORAL COLLOQUIUM BIOENERGY. 2020

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The increased biomass utilization leads to the need of an efficient and flexible usage of available sources. Therefore, it is necessary to combust low-cost biogenic residues, which inherently have higher nitrogen contents that lead to increased NOx emissions. In order to tackle this issue a new combustion technology with double air staging and flue gas recirculation is under development. The technology also features an increased fuel bed height and very low oxygen concentrations in the fuel bed to reduce fuel bed temperatures. This work focuses on the CFD simulation of the formation and reduction of NOx emissions of in a small scale boiler (35 kWth). Compared to previously applied models, major modification concerning the heat and mass transfer in the fuel bed as well as the subsequent conversion in the freeboard were made. The fuel bed is modelled via representative fuel particles with a Lagrangian approach and a thermally thick particle model considering intra-particle
gradients. Due to the increased fuel bed height and the relatively low oxygen concentration the formation and cracking of tars has to be considered in the simulation. This heavily influences the formation and reduction of NOx and its precursors. The fuel bound nitrogen is released via the particle model in the form of NO during char burnout and via a lumped tar species during pyrolysis. The cracking of the lumped tar species is modelled via two global gas phase reactions that releases the NOx precursors NH3 and HCN. The cracking reactions are added to a skeletal reaction mechanism with 28 species and 102 reactions that includes the fate of the N species. The simulation results are compared to experimental data from test runs with spruce wood chips and Miscanthus pellets as fuels. The comparison showed good agreement for the test runs with wood chips, where the temperature distribution inside the fuel bed and the released species above the fuel bed were predicted well. The test runs with Miscanthus showed a greater deviation between the measured and simulated values. For both fuels the NOx reduction that was experimentally observed in the secondary combustion zone could not be predicted with reasonable agreement. Therefore, it is necessary to further investigate the cracking of the tars and the subsequent formation of the NOx precursors. The presented work forms the basis for further improvements of the numerical models and subsequently the optimization of the new technology.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Transient CFD simulation of wood log combustion in stoves

Scharler R, Gruber T, Ehrenhöfer A, Kelz J, Mehrabian Bardar R, Bauer T, Hochenauer C, Anca-Couce A. Transient CFD simulation of wood log combustion in stoves. Renewable Energy 2020.145:651-662

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Wood log stoves are a common residential heating technology that produce comparably high pollutant emissions. Within this work, a detailed CFD model for transient wood log combustion in stoves was developed, as a basis for its optimization. A single particle conversion model previously developed by the authors for the combustion of thermally thick biomass particles, i.e. wood logs, was linked with CFD models for flow and turbulence, heat transfer and gas combustion. The sub-models were selected based on a sensitivity analysis and combined into an overall stove model, which was then validated by simulations of experiments with a typical wood log stove, including emission measurements. The comparison with experimental results shows a good accuracy regarding flue gas temperature as well as CO2 and O2 flue gas concentrations. Moreover, the characteristic behavior of CO emissions could be described, with higher emissions during the ignition and burnout phases. A reasonable accuracy is obtained for CO emissions except for the ignition phase, which can be attributed to model simplifications and the stochastic nature of stove operation. Concluding, the CFD model allows a transient simulation of a stove batch for the first time and hence, is a valuable tool for process optimization.


Conference contributions | 2019

A CFD-method for the analysis and optimization of the fixed bed conversion in biomass grate furnaces

Singer M, Gruber T, Mehrabian R, Scharler R. A CFD-method for the analysis and optimization of the fixed bed conversion in biomass grate furnaces. 27th European Biomass Conference & Exhibition (Poster). 2019.

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To optimize the combustion of biomass grate furnaces a sensitivity analysis is carried out by means of CFD simulation. The methodical procedure consists of a 3D packed bed biomass combustion model, which describes the most essential characteristics of the thermal conversion of biomass particles, such as the detailed consideration of drying, pyrolysis and char oxidation in parallel processes. Within the sensitivity analysis the following parameters have been investigated: distribution of false air, residence time of fuel on the grate and distribution of recirculated flue gas and primary air below the grate. To evaluate the influence of the varied parameters on the combustion process the focus lied on the position of the thermal conversion of the biomass and the CO at the outlet of the simulation domain. The results of the sensitivity analysis show a shift of the thermal conversion towards the grate end for increased false air as well as for reduced momentum of primary air/recirculated flue gas mixture. An increase of the fuel residence time leads to a shift of the thermal conversion towards the fuel inlet. Consequently a large region of the primary combustion zone is not used due to earlier release of CO inside the fuel bed.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

Applicability of the SOFC technology for coupling with biomass-gasifier systems: Short- and long-term experimental study on SOFC performance and degradation behaviour

Subotić V, Baldinelli A, Barelli L, Scharler R, Pongratz G, Hochenauer C, Anca-Couce A. Applicability of the SOFC technology for coupling with biomass-gasifier systems: Short- and long-term experimental study on SOFC performance and degradation behaviour. Applied Energy. 2019.256:113904

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Coupling biomass gasification with high temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFCs) is a promising solution to increase the share of renewables and reduce emissions. The quality of the producer gas used can, however, significantly impact the SOFC durability and reliability. The great challenge is to ensure undisturbed operation of such system and to find a trade-off between optimal SOFC operating temperature and system thermal integration, which may limit the overall efficiency. Thus, this study focuses on experimental investigation of commercial SOFC single cells of industrial size fueled with different representative producer gas compositions of industrial relevance at two relevant operating temperatures. The extensive experimental and numerical analyses performed showed that feeding SOFC with a producer gas from a downdraft gasifier, with hot gas cleaning, at an operating temperature of 750 °C represents the most favorable setting, considering system integration and the highest fuel utilization. Additionally, a 120 h long-term test was carried out, showing that a long-term operation is possible under stated operating conditions. Local degradation took place, which can be detected at an early stage using appropriate online-monitoring tools.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

Experimental investigation on biomass shrinking and swelling behaviour: Particles pyrolysis and wood logs combustion

Caposciutti G, Almuina-Villar H, Dieguez-Alonso A, Gruber T, Kelz J, Desideri U, Hochenauer C, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Experimental investigation on biomass shrinking and swelling behaviour: Particles pyrolysis and wood logs combustion. Biomass and Bioenergy 2019;123:1-13.

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Biomass is a suitable energy source to reduce the carbon footprint and increase the use of renewable energy. However, the biomass exploitation is still slowed by many technical issues. In most practical applications, such as gasification or combustion devices, it is important to predict the fuel physical behavior in order to determine the emissions and heat release profile as well as for modeling and design purposes. Within this paper, the study of the dimensional evolution of a biomass fuel (beech wood) in pyrolysis and combustion processes were carried out with the use of the image analysis tool. Sizes from 15 mm to 300 mm characteristic length range were employed in the experiments and the collected data were related to the mass loss and temperature evolution of the biomass particle. It was found that for all the fuel sizes employed a similar volume reduction (60%–66%) was obtained at the end of pyrolysis. However, for the small particles with minor intra-particle gradients shrinkage took place mainly at the end of conversion, while for bigger particles the size variation patter was more linear. Furthermore, swelling was detected in the pyrolysis experiments, and it was higher for a bigger particle size, while cracking and fragmentation phenomena was observed for large wood logs combustion in the stove.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2019

Single large wood log conversion in a stove: Experiments and modelling

Anca-Couce A, Caposciutti G, Gruber T, Kelz J, Bauer T, Hochenauer C, Scharler R. Single large wood log conversion in a stove: Experiments and modelling. Renewable Energy 2019.143:890-897.

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Natural draft wood log stoves for residential bioheat production are very popular due to the low fuel costs, the ecological aspect of a renewable energy source and the visual appeal of the flame. However, they have rather high pollutant emissions, specially of unburnt products. The description of large wood logs conversion in stoves needs to be improved to allow a process optimization which can reduce these emissions. The transient conversion of a single wood log in a stove is experimentally investigated with test runs quenching the log after defined time intervals and measuring the flue gas composition and temperatures in the log and stove. The experiments have been described with a volumetric single particle model, which predicts with good accuracy the log conversion until a time of around 30 min, when pyrolysis is almost ending. At that point, log fragmentation takes place and smaller fragments are detached from the log falling onto the bed of embers. Despite the increase in external surface area, char oxidation takes place at a moderate rate. This last stage of wood log conversion in a stove is the most challenging to model. Finally, preliminary recommendations are provided for reducing CO emissions in wood log stoves.


Scientific Journals | 2018

Experiments and modelling of NOx precursors release (NH3 and HCN) in fixed-bed biomass combustion conditions

Anca-Couce A, Sommersacher P, Evic N, Mehrabian R, Scharler R. Experiments and modelling of NOx precursors release (NH3 and HCN) in fixed-bed biomass combustion conditions. Fuel. 2018, 222: 529-537.

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There is a need to reduce NOx emissions, which can only be achieved through a detailed understanding of the mechanisms for their formation and reduction. In this work the release of the NOx precursors, NH3 and HCN, for different fuels is experimentally analysed and modelled in typical fixed-bed combustion conditions. It is shown that NH3 and HCN are released during the main devolatilization phase and the NH3/HCN ratio increases for fuels with a higher nitrogen content. A simplified two-steps model for their release is presented. The model can predict with a reasonable accuracy the release for fuels with a low nitrogen content, however deviations are present for fuels with a high nitrogen content, which probably arise due to a reduction of NH3 and HCN taking place already in the bed.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2017

A Generalization of Ackermann’s Formula for the Design of Continuous and Discontinuous Observers

Anca-Couce A, Sommersacher P, Scharler R. Online experiments and modelling with a detailed reaction scheme of single particle biomass pyrolysis. Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis. Available online 17 July 2017

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Detailed reaction schemes and experimental data for the online release of pyrolysis volatiles are required to gain a more fundamental understanding of biomass pyrolysis, which would in turn allow the process to be controlled in a more precise way and the development of more targeted applications. A detailed online characterisation of pyrolysis products has been conducted in single particle experiments with spruce pellets at different temperatures, obtaining a good closure of the elemental mass balances. The yields and online release of CO, CO2, H2O, CH4, other light hydrocarbons and total organic condensable species, as well as char yield and composition, can be predicted with a reasonable accuracy with the application of a single particle model, coupled with a detailed pyrolysis scheme, and a simple one-step scheme for tar cracking. In order to achieve it, improvements have been conducted in the pyrolysis scheme, mainly concerning the release of light hydrocarbons and char yield and composition. Deviations are still present in the different groups in which organic condensable species can be classified.


Conference Papers | 2017

A Theoretical and Experimental Study of the Formation of Aromatic Hydrocarbons (BTX/PAH) as Soot Precursors from Biomass Pyrolysis Products

Mehrabian R, Shiehnejadhesar A, Bahramian H, Anca-Couce A, Sommersacher P, Hochenauer C, Scharler R. A Theoretical and Experimental Study of the Formation of Aromatic Hydrocarbons (BTX/PAH) as Soot Precursors from Biomass Pyrolysis Products. 25th European Biomass Conference & Exhibition (oral presentation). May 2017, Stockholm, Sweden.

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In this work a novel reaction mechanism for gas phase reactions has been developed to predict the formation of aromatic compounds from the pyrolysis products of woody biomass particles. The aromatic compounds are important for being main soot precursors as well as their toxic properties. The developed gas phase mechanism is validated with experimental data from literature as well as experimental data performed with a single particle reactor for three different pyrolysis temperatures, namely 550, 800 and 1000°C. A good agreement is achieved between model results and experimental data for the total yield of each main family of aromatic hydrocarbons, i.e. phenolics, BTXs and PAHs.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2017

CO/CO2 Ratio in biomass char oxidation

Anca-Couce A, Sommersacher P, Shiehnejadhesar A, Mehrabian R, Hochenauer C, Scharler R. CO/CO2 Ratio in biomass char oxidation. INFUB 2017, 11th European Conference on Industrial Furnace and Boilers. 18-21 April 2017, Albufeira, Portugal.

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The CO/CO2 release ratio obtained during char combustion of single biomass particles has been analysed in this work experimentally and by modelling. Experiments have been conducted with spruce, straw and Miscanthus pellets at different temperatures. Furthermore, these experiments have been modelled with a single particle model coupled with a CFD model of the single particle reactor. The results show that the CO/CO2 ratio strongly depends on the feedstock, being lower for spruce than for straw or Miscanthus. Furthermore, the most commonly employed correlations for this ratio in literature are not adequate, as they either under- or over-predict it.


Conference Papers | 2017

Innovative flexible grate solutions for future biomass combustion appliances

Feldmeier, S., Wopienka, E., Schwarz, M., Mehrabian Bardar, R.: Innovative flexible grate solutions for future biomass combustion appliances. (European Biomass Conference and Exhibition 2017, Stockholm).

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The energetic utilization of alternative fuels (short rotation coppice, miscanthus), agricultural by-products (straw, corn cobs) or biomass residues (nut shells, coffee grounds) becomes of increasing interest. Due to variations in fuel properties – and the ash content in particular – biomass fuels considerably influence the conditions in the combustion zone and especially in the fuel bed. Usually, state-of-the-art combustion appliances are optimized for a particular fuel quality and typically approved only for utilization of standardized wood pellets or wood chips. Research activities within the GrateAdvance project focus on fuel flexible grate technologies being capable of adapting conditions in the combustion zone by a systematic and targeted adjustment of grate parameters in order to minimize emissions and slagging problems, thus setting the basis for a new generation of biomass technologies. Moreover, a novel control concept will ensure optimal combustion conditions for any biomass fuel, and specifically adjust to relevant fuel properties.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2017

Modelling heat of reaction in biomass pyrolysis with detailed reaction schemes

Anca-Couce A, Scharler R. Modelling heat of reaction in biomass pyrolysis with detailed reaction schemes. Fuel. 15 October 2017;206: 572-579.

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Primary devolatilization and the exothermic heterogeneous secondary charring of the primary volatiles need to be described in a consistent manner in order to correctly predict the heat of reaction of biomass pyrolysis. Detailed reaction schemes can currently predict mass loss and product composition of biomass pyrolysis with good accuracy, but have a weakness in the description of the heat of reaction. In this work it is shown for the first time that including secondary charring reactions a detailed reaction scheme can predict the evolution of the heat of pyrolysis for different conditions. The enthalpy of reaction is calculated for each reaction as the difference between the net calorific value of reactants and products. The presented model is able to describe the heat evolution in micro-TGA-DSC experiments conducted without a lid, where pyrolysis is endothermic, and with a lid, where secondary reactions are enhanced and the global heat of reaction shifts to exothermic. Furthermore, when it is coupled to a particle model, it correctly describes single particle pyrolysis experiments conducted with beech spheres where there is a remarkably exothermic peak in the centre temperature.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2016

Dominating high temperature corrosion mechanism in low alloy steels in wood chips fired boilers

Gruber T, Retschitzegger S, Scharler R, Obernberger I. Dominating high temperature corrosion mechanism in low alloy steels in wood chips fired boilers. Energy and Fuels. 17 March 2016;30(3): 2385-2394.

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Ash related problems such as slagging, fouling, and high temperature corrosion in biomass fired boilers are still insufficiently explored due to the complexity of the underlying processes. High temperature corrosion of low alloy steels like 13CrMo4-5 has already been investigated in plants firing chemically untreated wood chips. In this earlier work it has been suggested that the oxidation of the steel is the dominating mechanism in the material temperature range between 450 and 550 °C. Unfortunately the exponential dependence of the material degradation on the flue gas temperature also found within this work cannot be explained with the proposed corrosion mechanism. To determine the dominating corrosion mechanism, additionally test runs have been carried out in a specially designed drop tube reactor. To investigate the time-dependent corrosion behavior of 13CrMo4-5, a newly developed mass loss probe was applied under several constant parameter setups. In addition to these measurements, the time-dependent oxidation of 13CrMo4-5 under air was investigated in a muffle furnace. To gain relevant information regarding the corrosion mechanism prevailing, the deposits as well as the corrosion products have been examined subsequently to the test runs by means of scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive X-ray analyses. With the experimental data gained it could be shown that the dominating corrosion mechanism strongly depends on the conditions prevailing (e.g., steel temperature, flue gas temperature, and velocity) and can either be the oxidation of the steel by gaseous O2 and H2O or a combination of oxidation and active Cl-induced oxidation.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2016

Reaction mechanisms and multi-scale modelling of lignocellulosic biomass pyrolysis

Anca-Couce, A. Reaction mechanisms and multi-scale modelling of lignocellulosic biomass pyrolysis. Progress in Energy and Combustion Science. Volume 53, March 2016, Pages 41–79.

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In this work about pyrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass, the individual reaction mechanisms of cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin are initially described. The recent advances in the understanding of the fundamental reaction pathways are described, including quantum-mechanical calculations, and the description of pyrolysis as a two-step process, i.e., primary pyrolysis and secondary charring, the effect of the presence of an intermediate liquid compound, and the influence of inorganic species are discussed.

The need to describe biomass pyrolysis as the sum of the contributions of its individual components is then emphasised. The process of determining biomass mass loss kinetics is analysed, and the product composition and heat of reaction that are experimentally obtained during pyrolysis are presented, along with detailed schemes that can be used to predict them.

Finally, it is demonstrated that a multi-scale consideration of pyrolysis on multiple levels – specifically, on molecular, particle and reaction levels – is required to accurately describe biomass pyrolysis. Intra-particle phenomena and particle models are discussed and the reactor level is analysed with a focus placed on fixed bed and fluidised bed pyrolysis. In summary, a list of 10 research focal points that will be important in the future is presented.


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