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Dion, L.-M., Lefsrud, M., Orsat, V., and Cimon, C. (2013). "Biomass gasification and syngas combustion for greenhouse CO2 enrichment," BioRes. 8(2), 1520-1538.

Abstract

Greenhouse carbon dioxide (CO2) enrichment from biomass residues was investigated using exhaust gas from the combustion of syngas produced by gasification. Near complete syngas combustion is essential to achieve CO2 levels which increase plant yields while maintaining a safe environment for workers. Wood pellets were supplied to a downdraft gasifier to produce syngas fed to a steel swirl burner. The preliminary results were encouraging and represented a first step toward a successful development of this technology. The burner required an equivalence ratio (the actual air to fuel ratio relative to the stoichiometric air to fuel requirements) of 2.6 for near complete combustion. Concentrations of sulphur dioxide (SO2) and ethylene (C2H4) emissions were either below critical concentrations or negligible. In 60% of the trials, carbon monoxide (CO) emissions were below ASHRAE standards for indoor air quality. However, the average nitrogen oxide (NOx) emission was 23.6 ppm, and it would need to be reduced below the 0.05 ppm to meet ASHRAE standards. Proposed improvements to the syngas burner design to lower NOx emissions and increase efficiency are: integration of a low swirl design, mesh catalysers, a higher quality refractory material, and a more efficient heat exchanger. Theoretically, combustion or gasification of biomass could provide more CO2 for greenhouse enrichment than propane or natural gas per unit of energy.
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