Parametric study on the potential of using the small-scale Pyroprobe for gasification tests

The Pyroprobe is an advanced thermal characterization instrument for a variety of (mainly) solid materials. It is capable of heating up samples to high temperatures (<1000 oC) under very fast heating rate conditions (up to >20 oC/ms). Its main application is for fast pyrolysis studies. In most cases a small amount (~2-3 mg) is pyrolyzed under fast heating rate conditions, the evolved volatile species are trapped in a second heated compartment and are subsequently characterized. We have modified the instrument so as to quantify permanent gases and (part of the) volatile matter. Moreover, a bigger probe is introduced enabling higher sample loadings (30 mg), reducing errors in mass balancing.

The aim of this master end project is to study the potential for performing gasification tests. Sub-stoichiometric air amounts will be introduced by controlling flow conditions and particle residence time at peak temperature. Products formation will be studies as a function of the main process parameters. The results will be compared to conventional gasification practices. In addition, different materials will be added to study tar formation behavior. Tars form a challenge in most gasification technologies performed at moderately high temperature like those prevailing in fluidized beds.