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Non catalytic steam gasification of wood bio-oil

Chhiti, Younes. Non catalytic steam gasification of wood bio-oil. PhD, Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse, 2011

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Official URL: http://ethesis.inp-toulouse.fr/archive/00001699/

Abstract

Energy production from ligno-cellulosic biomass via gasification technology appears as an attractive option in the current energy context. The combination of decentralized fast pyrolysis of biomass to produce bio-oil, followed by transportation and gasification of bio-oil in bio-refinery has appeared as one of the most economically viable methods for syngas (H2+CO) production. The objective of this work is to bridge the lack of knowledge concerning the physicochemical transformation of bio-oil into syngas using non catalytic steam gasification in entrained flow reactors. This complex process involves vaporization, thermal cracking reactions with formation of gas, tars and two solid residues - char and soot - that are considered as undesirable products. This is followed by steam reforming of gas and tars, together with char and soot conversion. To better understand the process, the first step of gasification (pyrolysis) and thereafter the whole process (pyrolysis + gasification) were studied. The pyrolysis study focused on the influence of the heating rate, the final pyrolysis temperature and the ash content of bio-oil on char, tars and gas yields. At the higher heating rate char yield is smaller than 1%. In addition, ash seems to promote polymerization reactions and causes a decrease of gas yield. Concerning gasification, the effect of temperature on syngas yield and composition was studied. An increase in the reaction temperature implies higher hydrogen yield and higher solid carbon conversion. A thermodynamic equilibrium calculation showed that equilibrium was reached at 1400°C. Finally, the soot formation and oxidation mechanisms were investigated through experiments in three different atmospheres: inert (pyrolysis), rich in steam (gasification) and in the presence of oxygen (partial oxidation). A semi-empirical model was proposed and validated. It is based on detailed chemistry to describe gas phase reactions, a single reaction using C2H2 concentration to describe soot formation and one main heterogeneous reaction to describe soot oxidation.

Item Type:PhD Thesis
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Institution: Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - INPT
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Research Director:
Salvador, Sylvain
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