Description: Char combustion is typically the rate limiting step during the combustion of solid fuels. The magnitude and variation of char reactivity during combustion are, therefore, of primary concern when comparing solid fuels such as coal and biomass. In an effort to evaluate biomass` potential as a sustainable and renewable energy source, the reactivities of both biomass and coal chars were compared using Sandia`s Captive Particle Imaging (CPI) apparatus. This paper summarizes the experimental approach used to determine biomass and coal reactivities and presents results from CPT experiments. The reactivity of six types of char particles, two high-rank coal chars, two low-rank coal chars, and two biomass chars, were investigated using the CPT apparatus. Results indicate that both of the high-rank coal chars have relatively low reactivities when compared with the higher reactivities measured for the low-rank coal and the biomass chars. In addition, extinction behavior of the chars support related investigations that suggest carbonaceous structural ordering is an important consideration in understanding particle reactivity as a function of extent of burnout. High-rank coal chars were found to have highly ordered carbon structures, where as, both low-rank coal and biomass chars were found to have highly disordered carbon structures.
Date: August 1, 1995
Creator: Huey, S.P.; Davis, K.A. & Hurt, R.H.
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