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Other Publications | 2022

CleanAir2 project – citizen science investigating real-life emission from firewood stove

Schwabl M. CleanAir2 project – citizen science investigating real-life emission from firewood stove. Workshop 2: Advances in Instrumentation Used for Wood Heater Testing and Field Data Collection. March 2022.

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Technical Reports | 2022

Minimization of inorganic particulate matter emissions with a novel multi-fuel combustion technology that enhances inorganic retention in a compact updraft fixed-bed

Archan GAR, Scharler R, Buchmayr M, Kienzl N, Hochenauer C, Gruber J, Anca-Couce A. Minimization of inorganic particulate matter emissions with a novel multi-fuel combustion technology that enhances inorganic retention in a compact updraft fixed-bed. Fuel. 2022.318:123611

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A novel biomass combustion technology was investigated that operates at a low oxygen content under fixed-bed and double air staging conditions. This technology was used to achieve extremely low NOX and particle matter emissions in a 30 kW lab-scale reactor, displaying high fuel flexibility and no slagging. In this experimental work, the aim was to minimize inorganic particulate matter emissions, this aim was achieved by enabling the very low release of inorganics such as K from the fixed bed, which operates like a compact updraft gasifier. The elemental composition of the employed fuels, emitted dust particles, and fuel particle samples taken at three different heights within the fixed bed, and the bed temperatures were measured. The main objective in this study was to determine and understand the different processes of inorganic matter release that take place within the compact fixed bed. The results show that 98% and 99.7% of the K could be retained in the fixed bed for wood chips and miscanthus pellets, respectively, thus minimizing the particulate matter emissions. Different processes in the context of K release within the fixed bed could be identified for silica rich/agricultural and calcium rich / woody fuels, respectively and inconsistencies in the literature on these mechanisms could be resolved. In the case of miscanthus pellets, K is retained in silicates, and no accumulation of K, Cl and S occurs in the fixed bed above. In the case of wood chips, on the other hand, there is an unexpected K accumulation in the fixed bed, which is due to the release of K in the hot oxidation zone and the subsequent formation of large amounts of K chlorides and sulfates by condensation in the cooler upper region. Furthermore, for woody fuels, bounding or intercalation of K into the char matrix plays a more important role than the formation of carbonates in avoiding K release from the bed.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Real coupling of solid oxide fuel cells with a biomass steam gasifier: Operating boundaries considering performance, tar and carbon deposition analyses

Pongratz G, Subotić V, von Berg L, Schroettner H, Hochenauer C, Martini S, Hauck M, Steinruecken B, Skrzypkiewicz M, Kupecki J, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Real coupling of solid oxide fuel cells with a biomass steam gasifier: Operating boundaries considering performance, tar and carbon deposition analyses. Fuel. 15 May 2022.316:123310.

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Solid oxide fuel cells are a promising alternative to gas engines for combined heat and power production based on biomass gasification. The technical complexity of realizing gasifier – fuel cell couplings has limited the number of experiments conducted in the past. However, results from such experiments are of high importance for the evaluation of tar thresholds and operating conditions ensuring a stable operation of fuel cells. For the first time, it was possible to demonstrate for dozens of hours the operation of solid oxide fuel cells with real product gas from steam gasification with a steam-to-carbon ratio of 2 and a typical tar content for fluidized bed gasification. Four coupling experiments with industrial-relevant cell designs were conducted, demonstrating a stable operation for 30 h without structural degradation of the anodes for cells with nickel/ceria- and nickel/zirconia-based anodes at 800°C and 850°C, if heavy tars were partially removed (2.8–3.7 g·Nm−3 gravimetric tars). Raw gas operation (4.6–4.8 g·Nm−3 gravimetric tars) led to metal dusting effects on nickel contact meshes and nickel/zirconia-based anodes, whereas nickel/ceria-based anodes were less affected. Carbon deposited on the alumina support in all experiments whereby a change from pyrolytic to graphitic structure could be observed when increasing the temperature from 800°C to 850°C, thus significantly reducing the risk for blockages in the flow channels. Moreover, high tar and benzene conversion rates were observed. Concluding, operating temperatures of 850°C and the removal only of heavy tars can enable stable long-term operation with a tar-laden steam gasifier product gas, even without increasing the steam-to-carbon ratio to values exceeding two.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

The effect of the presence of water on sulfur removal capacity during H2S removal from syngas using ZnO adsorbent

Dogan C, Martini S, Rets hitzegger S, Cetin B. The effect of the presence of water on sulfur removal capacity during H2S removal from syngas using ZnO adsorbent. Environmental Technology. 15 May 2022.

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Compared to extensive studies on affecting parameters in sulfur removal with ZnO adsorbents from coal gasification syngas, similar studies conducted for biomass gasification syngas (BGS) are quite rare. Thus, considering the BGSs with high water content, this study was performed to investigate the effect of H2O presence in syngas on sulfur removal capacity (SRC) of ZnO adsorbents. Initially, the effect of gas composition and temperature on SRC in binary gas mixture was investigated. While H2O decreased the SRC, as expected, the highest reduction in the capacity occurred in the CO–H2S gas mixture due to observed COS formation. Second, the SRCs and resulting COS formation were compared for synthetic syngas mixtures having different water contents and for different amounts of adsorbents. Finally, the separate and combined effects of temperature and H2O on SRC and COS formation in synthetic syngas were investigated by comparing SRCs of typical syngas under wet and dry conditions. The results showed that increasing the amount of adsorbent and temperature results in higher SRC due to a reduction in COS formation through the reactions of COS with H2 and H2O. This indicates that it is critical to control the residence time of syngas and temperature to reduce COS formation during ZnO adsorption.


Conference contributions | 2021

Advances in biomass gasification for the production of Bioheat, bioelectricity and biofuels

Anca-Couce A, Archan G, Von Berg L, Pongratz G, Martini S, Buchmayr M, Rakos C, Hochenauer C, Scharler R. Advances in biomass gasification for the production of Bioheat, bioelectricity and biofuels. 29th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition, EUBCE 2021, 26-29 April 2021. 2021.

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Current barriers to increase the use of bioenergy for different applications are first discussed. Then, recent advances are presented on gasification-based technologies to overcome these barriers that have been reached at TU Graz together with several partners. Gasification-based fuel bed concepts integrated in biomass combustion can significantly reduce emissions for bioheat production. Advances are presented for modern biomass boilers, significantly reducing nitrogen oxides and particle matter emissions as well as increasing the feedstock flexibility; and micro-gasifiers for traditional biomass utilization, significantly reducing the emissions of unburnt products. Gasification-based processes have as well the possibility to score high electrical efficiencies and to synthetize several products as second-generation biofuels. Advances are presented on measures for reducing the presence of contaminants as tars, including the catalytic use of char for tar cracking; and in applications of the producer gas, including gas cleaning and direct coupling with a solid oxide fuel cell to maximize electricity production. © 2021, ETA-Florence Renewable Energies.


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

Ash Transformation during Single-Pellet Combustion of Agricultural Biomass with a Focus on Potassium and Phosphorus

Hedayati A, Lindgren R, Skoglund N, Boman C, Kienzl N, Öhman M. Ash Transformation during Single-Pellet Combustion of Agricultural Biomass with a Focus on Potassium and Phosphorus. Energy and Fuels. January 2021. 35(2):1449–1464.

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In this study, ash transformation and release of critical ash-forming elements during single-pellet combustion of different types of agricultural opportunity fuels were investigated. The work focused on potassium (K) and phosphorus (P). Single pellets of poplar, wheat straw, grass, and wheat grain residues were combusted in a macro-thermogravimetric analysis reactor at three different furnace temperatures (600, 800, and 950 °C). In order to study the transformation of inorganic matters at different stages of the thermal conversion process, the residues were collected before and after full devolatilization, as well as after complete char conversion. The residual char/ash was characterized by scanning electron microscopy–energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, inductively coupled plasma, and ion chromatography, and the interpretation of results was supported by thermodynamic equilibrium calculations. During combustion of poplar, representing a Ca–K-rich woody energy crop, the main fraction of K remained in the residual ash primarily in the form of K2Ca(CO3)2 at lower temperatures and in a K–Ca-rich carbonate melt at higher temperatures. Almost all P retained in the ash and was mainly present in the form of hydroxyapatite. For the Si–K-rich agricultural biomass fuels with a minor (wheat straw) or moderate (grass) P content, the main fraction of K remained in the residual ash mostly in K–Ca-rich silicates. In general, almost all P was retained in the residual ash both in K–Ca–P–Si-rich amorphous structures, possibly in phosphosilicate-rich melts, and in crystalline forms as hydroxyapatite, CaKPO4, and calcium phosphate silicate. For the wheat grain, representing a K–P-rich fuel, the main fraction of K and P remained in the residual ash in the form of K–Mg-rich phosphates. The results showed that in general for all studied fuels, the main release of P occurred during the devolatilization stage, while the main release of K occurred during char combustion. Furthermore, less than 20% of P and 35% of K was released at the highest furnace temperature for all fuels.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Ash transformation during single-pellet gasification of agricultural biomass with focus on potassium and phosphorus

Hedayati A, Sefidari H, Boman C, Skoglund N, Kienzl N, Öhman M. Ash transformation during single-pellet gasification of agricultural biomass with focus on potassium and phosphorus. Fuel Processing Technology. 15 June 2021.217:106805

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Agricultural biomasses and residues can play an important role in the global bioenergy system but their potential is limited by the risk of several ash-related problems such as deposit formation, slagging, and particle emissions during their thermal conversion. Therefore, a thorough understanding of the ash transformation reactions is required for this type of fuels. The present work investigates ash transformation reactions and the release of critical ash-forming elements with a special focus on K and P during the single-pellet gasification of different types of agricultural biomass fuels, namely, poplar, grass, and wheat grain residues. Each fuel was gasified as a single pellet at three different temperatures (600, 800, and 950 °C) in a Macro-TGA reactor. The residues from different stages of fuel conversion were collected to study the gradual ash transformation. Characterization of the residual char and ash was performed employing SEM-EDS, XRD, and ICP with the support of thermodynamic equilibrium calculations (TECs). The results showed that the K and P present in the fuels were primarily found in the residual char and ash in all cases for all studied fuels. While the main part of the K release occurred during the char conversion stage, the main part of the P release occurred during the devolatilization stage. The highest releases – less than 18% of P and 35% of K – were observed at the highest studied temperature for all fuels. These elements were present in the residual ashes as K2Ca(CO3)2 and Ca5(PO4)3OH for poplar; K-Ca-rich silicates and phosphosilicates in mainly amorphous ash for grass; and an amorphous phase rich in K-Mg-phosphates for wheat grain residues.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Categorization of small-scale biomass combustion appliances by characteristic numbers

Feldmeier S, Schwarz M, Wopienka E, Pfeifer C. Categorization of small-scale biomass combustion appliances by characteristic numbers. Renewable Energy. 2021.163:2128-2136.

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The market offers a broad range of different combustion appliances dedicated to residential heating with biomass. The effect of fuel properties on the formation of slag and emissions varies and the technology influences the impact to a certain extent. The applicability of biomass fuels is not only determined by operational settings but also by the design of boiler components as grate area and combustion chamber. Aspects as the fuel load on the grate, residence time, geometry of grate and combustion chamber design, as well as feeding and de-ashing influence the extent of slag formation and emission release. The determination of characteristic numbers by means of constructional measures allows a systematic comparison and - in a further step - an assessment/categorization of combustion technologies. After conducting a boiler survey relevant parameters regarding grate, combustion chamber, feeding, and ash removal were gathered. Characteristic numbers were specified in order to compare technological aspects. The results of this study allow the investigation of the influence of the combustion technology on the performance. They will assist the systematic and targeted design of small-scale boilers and the optimization of combustion appliances in future, especially when it comes to fuel-flexibility.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Combustion of poultry litter and mixture of poultry litter with woodchips in a fixed bed lab-scale batch reactor

Katsaros G, Sommersacher P, Retschitzegger S, Kienzl N, Tassou SA, Pandey DS. Combustion of poultry litter and mixture of poultry litter with woodchips in a fixed bed lab-scale batch reactor. Fuel. 2021.286.119310.

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Experiments have been conducted in a batch fixed bed lab-scale reactor to investigate the combustion behaviour of three different biomass fuels, poultry litter (PL), blend of PL with wood chips (PL/WC) and softwood pellets (SP). Analysis of the data gathered after completion of the test runs, provided useful insights about the thermal decomposition behaviour of the fuels, the formation of N gaseous species, the release of ash forming elements and the estimation of aerosol emissions. It was observed that the N gaseous species are mainly produced during the devolatilisation phase. Hydrogen cyanide (HCN) was the predominant compound in the case of SP combustion, whereas ammonia (NH3) displayed the highest concentration during the combustion of PL and blend (PL/WC). With reference to ash forming elements, the release rates of potassium (K) and sodium (Na) range between 15–50% and 20–37% respectively, whereas the release rate of sulphur (S) falls between 54–92%. Chlorine (Cl) presents very high release rate for all tested fuels acquiring values greater than 85%, showing the volatile nature of the specific compound. The maximum potential of aerosol emissions was estimated based on the calculation of ash forming elements. In particular, during PL combustion the maximum aerosol emissions were observed, 2806 mg/Nm3 (dry flue gas, 13 vol% O2), mainly influenced by the release rate of K in the gas phase. Fuel indexes for the pre-evaluation of combustion related challenges such as NOx emissions, potential for aerosols formation, corrosion risk, and ash melting behaviour have also been investigated.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Combustion of poultry litter and mixture of poultry litter with woodchips in a fixed bed lab-scale batch reactor

Katsaros G, Sommersacher P, Retschitzegger S, Kienzl N, Tassou SA, Pandey DS. Combustion of poultry litter and mixture of poultry litter with woodchips in a fixed bed lab-scale batch reactor. Fuel. 2021.286.119310.

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Experiments have been conducted in a batch fixed bed lab-scale reactor to investigate the combustion behaviour of three different biomass fuels, poultry litter (PL), blend of PL with wood chips (PL/WC) and softwood pellets (SP). Analysis of the data gathered after completion of the test runs, provided useful insights about the thermal decomposition behaviour of the fuels, the formation of N gaseous species, the release of ash forming elements and the estimation of aerosol emissions. It was observed that the N gaseous species are mainly produced during the devolatilisation phase. Hydrogen cyanide (HCN) was the predominant compound in the case of SP combustion, whereas ammonia (NH3) displayed the highest concentration during the combustion of PL and blend (PL/WC). With reference to ash forming elements, the release rates of potassium (K) and sodium (Na) range between 15–50% and 20–37% respectively, whereas the release rate of sulphur (S) falls between 54–92%. Chlorine (Cl) presents very high release rate for all tested fuels acquiring values greater than 85%, showing the volatile nature of the specific compound. The maximum potential of aerosol emissions was estimated based on the calculation of ash forming elements. In particular, during PL combustion the maximum aerosol emissions were observed, 2806 mg/Nm3 (dry flue gas, 13 vol% O2), mainly influenced by the release rate of K in the gas phase. Fuel indexes for the pre-evaluation of combustion related challenges such as NOx emissions, potential for aerosols formation, corrosion risk, and ash melting behaviour have also been investigated.


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

Detailed NOX precursor measurements within the reduction zone of a novel small-scale fuel flexible biomass combustion technology

Archan G, Scharler R, Pölzer L, Buchmayr M, Sommersacher P, Hochenauer C, Gruber J, Anca-Couce A. Detailed NOX precursor measurements within the reduction zone of a novel small-scale fuel flexible biomass combustion technology. Fuel. 15 October 2021.302:121073

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A novel biomass combustion technology with a compact fixed-bed operated with a low oxygen content and double air staging was investigated. Minimized flue gas emissions at high fuel flexibility were achieved only with primary measures. The fuel nitrogen conversion mechanisms were investigated in detail in the secondary zone of a 30 kW lab-reactor, designed as efficient reduction zone. Experimental investigations were carried out to determine the distribution of gas temperatures, main dry product gas components as well as NOX precursors such as NH3 and HCN along the height of the reduction zone. The objective was to determine and understand the various fuel nitrogen conversion mechanisms in the reduction zone that can minimize NOX emissions.

It was found that the HCN/NH3 ratio increases with the fuel nitrogen content. This corresponds to an unexpected opposite trend to typical biomass grate furnaces. It was concluded that it is crucial for the HCN/NH3 ratio whether the released nitrogen tars are already cracked in the fixed-bed or only in the gas phase, as in the novel technology. Furthermore, the influence of gas temperature, air ratio, mixing, recirculated flue gas and residence time on the formation and reduction of NH3, HCN and NO is discussed.

Finally, this novel technology achieves NOX emissions of<95 mg·m−3 and 175 mg·m−3 for woody and herbaceous fuels, respectively, which is well below the small-scale state-of-the-art for the respective N contents and it achieves fuel nitrogen conversions to NOX in flue gas of 35% and 25%, respectively.


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

Experimental evaluation of primary measures for NOX and dust emission reduction in a novel 200 kW multi-fuel biomass boiler

Archan G, Anca-Couce A, Buchmayr M, Hochenauer C, Gruber J, Scharler R. Experimental evaluation of primary measures for NOX and dust emission reduction in a novel 200 kW multi-fuel biomass boiler. June 2021.170:1186-1196. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.renene.2021.02.055

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The aim of this work is to utilize various biogenic fuels without ash slagging and to significantly reduce NOX and particulate matter emissions in comparison to modern combustion technologies. For this purpose, a novel small-scale multi-fuel biomass grate furnace technology was developed and experimentally investigated. It employs a low oxygen concentration in the fixed-bed and a double air staging, including the supply of flue gas recirculation. In this way slagging is prevented on the grate, reducing the release of ash-forming volatiles, NOX emissions are minimized in the reduction zone and an efficient flue gas burnout is achieved in the tertiary zone. Wood pellets and chips as well as miscanthus briquettes were investigated.

The measured total particle emissions showed a reduction of 68% for pellets and 70% for wood chips compared to typical small-scale furnaces. Furthermore, a reduction of NOX emissions of 39% for wood chips, 40% for wood pellets and 45% for miscanthus briquettes was achieved compared to typical small-scale furnaces. The experimental parameter study provided fundamental insights into the various mechanisms involved in this novel technology, which is close to market introduction, and proved its high fuel flexibility and great potential for particulate matter and NOX emission reduction.


Conference contributions | 2021

Flue gas recirculation during poultry litter combustion in a fixed bed lab-scale batch reactor

Katsaros G, Sommersacher P, Retschitzegger S, Kienzl N, Pandey DS. Flue gas recirculation during poultry litter combustion in a fixed bed lab-scale batch reactor. 29th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition, EUBCE 2021, 26-29 April 2021. 2021

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This study focuses on the combustion behaviour of poultry litter which was experimentally studied in a fixed bed lab-scale reactor. The combustion experiments not only provided useful insights pertaining to the thermal decomposition of poultry litter over time, release of main gaseous compounds and nitrogen (N) species, but also the release of elements found initially in the ash composition. The main gaseous species were released during the devolatilisation phase, whereas Ammonia (NH3) was found to be the most abundant compound of N-gaseous species (45%) followed by nitrogen oxide (NO) with a fraction of ~10%. Alkali metals showed moderate release rates, whilst Chlorine (Cl) was observed to have the highest one (90%) of the ash forming elements, depicting the high volatility of the specific compound.


Other Publications | 2021

Gasification - a key technology in the energy transition and for the circular economy

Martini S. Gasification - a key technology in the energy transition and for the circular economy. IEA Bioenergy Task33 Meeting. December 2021.

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Other publication | 2021

Gemeinsam richtig heizen - Video

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Other Publications | 2021

Raising awareness and changing behaviour with the traveling combustion education - The CleanAir II project

Schwabl M. Raising awareness and changing behaviour with the traveling combustion education - The CleanAir II project. IEA Bioenergy End-of-Triennium Conference. December 2021.

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Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Real-life emissions from residential wood combustion in Austria: From TSP emissions to PAH emission profiles, diagnostic ratios and toxic risk assessment

B Kirchsteiger, F Kubik, R Sturmlechner, H Stressler, M Schwabl, M Kistler, A Kasper-Giebl. Real-life emissions from residential wood combustion in Austria: From TSP emissions to PAH emission profiles, diagnostic ratios and toxic risk assessment. Atmospheric Pollution Research. 2021.12:8.

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Residential wood combustion is, besides particulate emissions, also linked to emissions of organic compounds, comprising various toxic substances such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Although, literature data has shown that highest emissions occur during maloperations caused by the user itself, most studies focus on lab-testing not reflecting the situation in the field. This study evaluates the real-life situation in Austria, investigating emissions of total suspended particles (TSP) and particle-bound substances of four manually operated room heaters commonly installed in people's homes. Measurements were conducted within a field measurement campaign realized in the scope of the Clean Air by biomass project. To evaluate the impact of the users' habit two types of combustion experiments were performed, one representing the diversity of possible maloperations and one realized under optimized conditions following a strict optimization protocol. As special focus was laid on PAHs, sampling was realized using a dilution system adapted for the use in the field. Generally, optimization lead to a clear decrease of most compounds (i.e. TSP, OC, EC, PAHs), however, emissions of the anhydrosugar levoglucosan were not affected at all. Total PAH emissions could be clearly reduced, moreover, optimization lead to a shift towards low molecular weight PAHs and thus, less toxic ones, clearly reflected by lower toxicity equivalents. Correlation analysis using the Spearman's rank method showed significantly high correlations among the individual PAH congeners, and rather low ones with other target substances.


Technical Reports | 2021

Tailoring of the pore structures of wood pyrolysis chars for potential use in energy storage applications

Maziarka P, Sommersacher P, Wang X, Kienzl N, Retschitzegger S, Prins W, Hedin N, Ronsse F. Tailoring of the pore structures of wood pyrolysis chars for potential use in energy storage applications. Applied Energy.2021.286:116431. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apenergy.2020.116431

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Char obtained from biomass pyrolysis is an eco-friendly porous carbon, which has potential use as a material for electrodes in supercapacitors. For that application, a high microporous specific surface area (SSA) is desired, as it relates to the accessible surface for an applied electrolyte. Currently, the incomplete understanding of the relation between porosity development and production parameters hinders the production of tailor-made, bio-based pyrochars for use as electrodes. Additionally, there is a problem with the low reliability in assessing textual properties for bio-based pyrochars by gas adsorption. To address the aforementioned problems, beech wood cylinders of two different lengths, with and without pre-treatment with citric acid were pyrolysed at temperatures of 300–900 °C and analysed by gas adsorption. The pyrolyzed chars were characterised with adsorption with N2 and CO2 to assess the influence of production parameters on the textual properties. The new approach in processing the gas adsorption data used in this study demonstrated the required consistency in assessing the micro- and mesoporosity. The SSA of the chars rose monotonically in the investigated range of pyrolysis temperatures. The pre-treatment with citric acid led to an enhanced SSA, and the length of the cylinders correlated with a reduced SSA. With pyrolysis at 900 °C, the micro-SSAs of samples with 10 mm increased by on average 717 ± 32 m2/g. The trends among the investigated parameters and the textual properties were rationalized and provide a sound basis for further studies of tailor-made bio-based pyrochars as electrode materials in supercapacitors.


Conference contributions | 2020

Advanced Test Methods for Pellet Stoves – A Technical Review

Reichert G, Schwabl M, Schmidl C. Advanced Test Methods for Pellet Stoves – A Technical Review. 6th Central European Biomass Conference (oral presentation) 2020.

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Third party testing of direct heating appliances fueled with pellets has been established in many countries worldwide. The main goals are ensuring operation safety and a minimum level of performance of the products prior to market implementation. This kind of approval procedure for new products requires testing standards, certified testing bodies and a legal framework defining minimum requirements for specified performance parameters which are assessed in the respective standards.

While the overall targets are quite similar for all countries having set-up such procedures, the practical implementation of these targets in the national/international testing standards is remarkably different. This applies to both, the way of operating the appliance during the testing and the measurements performed during the testing.

Furthermore several industries were requested recently to modify their product standards towards more realistic operating conditions. The most famous example is car industry, but this request may also apply to biomass heating systems.

 


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2020

Applicability of Torrefied Sunflower Husk Pellets in Small and Medium Scale Furnaces

Kienzl N, Margaritis N, Isemin R, Zaychenko V, Strasser C, Kourkoumpas DS, Grammelis P, Klimov D, Larina O, Sytchev G, Mikhalev A. Applicability of Torrefied Sunflower Husk Pellets in Small and Medium Scale. Waste and Biomass Valorization. 2020;275:122882.

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The aim of this paper is to test the applicability of upgraded agricultural biomass feedstock such as torrefied sunflower husks during combustion in small and medium heating applications. Sunflower husk is formed in large quantities at enterprises producing sunflower oil and can be used as biofuel. However, big problems arise due to the low bulk density of husks and the rapid growth of ash deposits on the heating surfaces of boilers. In order to solve these problems, it was proposed to produce pellets from husks, and to subject these pellets to torrefaction. After torrefaction, net calorific value was increased by 29% while the risk of high temperature corrosion of boilers was reduced. Signs of ash softening neither occurred in combustion of raw nor in combustion of torrefied sunflower husk pellets. High aerosol emissions, already present in raw sunflower husk pellets, could not be mitigated by torrefaction. First combustion results at medium scale furnaces indicated that sunflower husk pellets (both raw and torrefied) in a commercial boiler < 400 kW, operated in a mode with low primary zone temperatures (< 850 °C), meet current emission limits. Regarding the future upcoming emission limits according to the European Medium Combustion Plant Directive, additional measures are required in order to comply with the dust limits.


Conference contributions | 2020

Biochar’s reaction kinetics under gasification conditions by experimental tests with TGA

Lagler J, Martini S, Kienzl N, Loder A. Biochar’s reaction kinetics under gasification conditions by experimental tests with TGA. 6th Central European Biomass Conference (poster). 2020.

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During the last years biomass evolved into one of the most important energy sources in Central Europe. Depending on the atmosphere, different types of thermochemical processes can be differentiated: pyrolysis, gasification and combustion, whereas pyrolysis operates without any oxygen in the atmosphere, combustion with the highest ratio of oxygen. Depending on the conversion technology and conversion conditions, different products can be generated: heat, cooling power and electrical power, liquid, gaseous and solid products, such as hydrogen, FT-fuels and biochar.
This work focuses on the valorisation of solid side products of gasification based biomass CHP-systems to increase ecologic and economic benefit. Depending on the conversion process of biomass into producer gas this solid residue consists mainly of ash or of so called biochar with high carbon content. Increasing the amount of biochar leads to a decrease of producer gas, but, with the high market potential of biochar, the economic benefits increase. According to its characteristics (e.g. purity, surface structure) different applications can be addressed and therefore different prices can be achieved. Therefore, extended research on biochar treatment processes and related reaction kinetics of biochar is from crucial importance for the development and optimisation of downstream upgrading processes in order to reach the desired quality of the biochar. In the past, such considerations of utilising side products, like biochar, have not been in the centre of attention during the design phase of gasification reactors. Therefore, the establishment of a finishing-treatment of biochar extracted from a gasification process is under investigation. The focus of this paper lies on the reaction kinetics of biochar activation itself and not the primary material (biomass). In order to derivate correlations between reaction kinetics and atmosphere compositions as well as temperature, experimental test runs are conducted with a Thermogravimetric Analyser (TGA) including a steam furnace, which enables studies of mass and energy changes under defined absolute humidity. To produce applicable and reliable data, the limitations of the TGA-test-setup are evaluated with examinations on variations of sample mass, bulk density, particle size distribution and the gas flow. On this basis the test design is defined with certain specifications on the sample preparation and a constant flow velocity. The investigated biochar taken out the gasification process is dried, milled and sieved for the TGA-tests. The main part is devoted to conduct a detailed investigation changing the content of moisture (H2O) and carbon dioxide (CO2) as well as the temperature. The tests are operated at a temperature range between 700 and 1000°C, H2O-concentrations from 0 to 80 vol% and CO2-concentrations also in the range of 0 to 80 vol%. These systematic experimental variations provide the basis for a model of the reaction kinetics of biochar under different boundary conditions. The data is to be evaluated via the generic model including temperature and the partial pressures of CO2 and H2O. Afterwards it will be matched with conventional models (e.g. Arrhenius plot, linear regression models) to determine their suitability. One of those models was used in the paper of Ollero et al, where the influence of CO2 on the reaction kinetics of olive residue was investigated. 1First results show that the reaction rate of biochar is much lower than the one of olive residue. Effects of treatment conditions on the surface properties are investigated by taking out the treated samples after a defined treatment period at a defined mass loss and subsequent surface analysis (BET, pore size/volume distribution) of the samples. In first BET surface analysis, the treatments of biochar with vapour lead to a surface of approximately 1000m²/g whereas the original sample has a BET surface lower than 150m²/g. This finding leads to the question how the reaction kinetics of a treatment process influences the surface change. The obtained data is taken as basis for developing an upgrading process for biochar to a high value product of the gasification process. In order to prove the suitability of TGA-tests for identifying optimised treatment conditions, further research shall demonstrate the correlation of the lab-scale TGA-results with experiences of pilot scale tests.
 


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.