Predicting Properties of Gas and Solid Streams by Intrinsic Kinetics of Fast Pyrolysis of Wood

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© 2015 American Chemical Society. Pyrolysis has the potential to create a biocrude oil from biomass sources that can be used as fuel or as feedstock for subsequent upgrading to hydrocarbon fuels or other chemicals. The product distribution/composition, however, is linked to the biomass source. This work investigates the products formed from pyrolysis of woody biomass with a previously developed chemical kinetics model. Different woody feedstocks reported in prior literature are placed on a common basis (moisture, ash, fixed carbon free) and normalized by initial elemental composition through ultimate analysis. Observed product distributions over the full devolatilization range are explored, reconstructed by the model, and verified with independent experimental data collected with a microwave-assisted pyrolysis system. These trends include production of permanent gas (CO, CO2), char, and condensable (oil, water) species. Elementary compositions of these streams are also investigated. Close agreement between literature data, model predictions, and independent experimental data indicate that the proposed model/method is able to predict the ideal distribution from fast pyrolysis given reaction temperature, residence time, and feedstock composition.

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Energy and Fuels