Effect of Design and Operating Parameters on the Gasification Process of Biomass in an Updraft Fixed Bed: a Statistical Study

Author(s): M. Senthil Kumar and S. Vivekanandan

The main objective of this paper is to study the effect of design and operating parameters, mainly as bed temperature (T), pressure (P), equivalence ration (R), feed rate (F) and particle size (S) on the performance of the gasification process of coconut shell as biomass in a continuous fixed bed updraft reactor. In the present investigation, an empirical relationship was developed to predict the process of generating fuel gas with better quality through gasification of biomass in a fluidized bed reactor using response surface methodology (RSM). Six major components of the producer gas such as O2, H2, CO, CO2, CH4, and N2 were analyzed in the laboratory along with the evaluation of tar yield and cold gas efficiency. It was observed that the concentrations of hydrogen, oxygen nitrogen and carbon monoxide were increased with rise in gasification temperature, pressure and equivalent ratio (0.2-0.35). On the other hand, higher equivalence ratios (0.4-0.5) caused to decrease the concentrations of hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and carbon monoxide. Higher equivalence ratio also resulted in more gas yields and cold gas efficiency due to increase in the exothermic reactions. Furthermore, it was observed that the CH4 and CO2 decreased with the increase of temperature and pressure. The developed model was made a good prediction for the experimental data as observed for the gas species concentrations.

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