Preliminary understanding on the ash behavior of algae during cogasification in an entrained flow reactor

Zhu, Youjian, Van Eyk, Philip, Boman, Christoffer, Brostrom, Markus, Kirtania, Kawnish, Piotrowska, Patrycja, Bostrom, Dan, de Nys, Rocky, Bhattacharya, Sankar, Gentili, Francesco, and Ashman, Peter (2018) Preliminary understanding on the ash behavior of algae during cogasification in an entrained flow reactor. Fuel Processing Technology, 175. pp. 26-34.

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Abstract

Algae are considered as a promising alternative fuel to produce energy due to its advantages such as high production yield, short growth cycle and flexible growing environment. Unfortunately, ash-related issues restrict its thermochemical utilization due to the high ash content and especially the high alkali metal concentration. In this paper, the gasification performance and ash behavior were experimentally analysed for three macro- and micro-algal species. Clear differences in the proximate and ultimate compositions were found between the cultivated algae used in this study and macroalgae (seaweed) harvested from the marine environments. Algal biomass generally contained higher Na and P contents than lignocellulosic biomass. Microalgae also had a relatively high mineral content due to the impurities in the harvesting process which included centrifugal pumping followed by sedimentation. Co-gasification of 20 wt% algae with softwood was investigated using an entrained flow reactor. The addition of both macroalgal species Derbersia tenuissima and Oedogonium to softwood had a limited influence on the gas yields and carbon conversion. On the other hand, the addition of the microalgal species Scenedesmus significantly decreased the main gas yields and carbon conversion. Moreover, the addition of algae clearly changed the residual ash composition of the base fuel. Finally, a preliminary understanding of the ash behavior of the tested algae blends was obtained through the analysis of the fuel ashes and the collected residual ashes. Fouling and corrosion were presumably occurred during the co-gasification of wood/macroalgae blends in view of the high alkali metal content. Microalga Scenedesmus had a high mineral content which could potentially capture the alkali metal in the ash and mitigate fouling when gasified with softwood. The growing environment and harvesting method were found to be significantly affecting the ash behavior implying the need for careful consideration regarding co-gasification process.

Item ID: 53731
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1873-7188
Keywords: algae; ash behavior; co-gasification; fouling; ash transformation
Funders: Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education (STINT), Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC), Provincial Key Research Project of Higher Education Institutions in Henan (PKRP), Zhengzhou University of Light Industry (ZU), Swedish Strategic Research Program Bio4Energy, Australian Research Council (ARC), Australian Government (AG), J. Gust. Richert stiftelse, Swedish Energy Agency, SP Processum
Projects and Grants: STINT Gasification of Algae: Swedish − Australian Research Platform (GASAR) Project, NSFC 51706210, PKRP project 15600097, ZU doctoral research foundation 13100368, ARC Linkage projects funding scheme project LP100200616, AG Australian Renewable Energy Agencey (ARENA), AG Advanced Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre (AMCRC)
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2018 05:48
FoR Codes: 10 TECHNOLOGY > 1003 Industrial Biotechnology > 100302 Bioprocessing, Bioproduction and Bioproducts @ 50%
09 ENGINEERING > 0904 Chemical Engineering > 090405 Non-automotive Combustion and Fuel Engineering (incl Alternative/Renewable Fuels) @ 50%
SEO Codes: 85 ENERGY > 8505 Renewable Energy > 850501 Biofuel (Biomass) Energy @ 100%
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