Removal of Inorganic Constituents of Fresh Herbaceous Fuels: Processes and Costs

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Inorganic constituents of ash in biomass fuels cause equipment failure and operating difficulties in thermochemical energy conversion facilities. Alkali metals, in the presence of chlorine and sulfur, are the leading contributors to this problem. Banagrass, an herbaceous species being considered for use in a dedicated energy crop, contains high levels of potassium and chlorine. Laboratory-scaleequipment, representing processes employed in the commercial extraction of sugar from cane, were used to prepare banagrass fuel treatments that included two degrees of comminution (coarse and fine) and two dewatering schemes (mechanical dewatering only, and a multi-step process consisting of initial mechanical dewatering followed by a water rinse and second dewatering). The treatment thatincluded fine comminution and multi-step dewatering substantially reduced in ash (45%), K (90%), Cl ((*%), S (55%), Na (68%), P (72%) and Mg (68%). The coarse comminution and multi-step dewatering scheme also resulted in reductions, but generally with 10 to 20% more of the initial constituent mass retained in the fuel. These two treatments produced fuels containing 0.11 and 0.23 kg (Na2O+K2O)Gj-1. By comparison, bagasse, the fibrous byproduct of sugarcane, contained 0.06 to 0.17 kg (Na2O+K2O) GJ-1.
Original languageAmerican English
PagesVol. 1: 401-414
Number of pages14
StatePublished - 1997
Event3rd Biomass Conference of the Americas - Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Duration: 24 Aug 199729 Aug 1997


Conference3rd Biomass Conference of the Americas
CityMontreal, Quebec, Canada

Bibliographical note

Work performed by University of Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii and University of California, Davis, California

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-570-24323


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