Predictions of biochar yield and elemental composition during torrefaction of forest residues

Quang Vu Bach, Wei Hsin Chen, Yen Shih Chu, Øyvind Skreiberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Citations (Scopus)


In this work, a direct prediction method coupled with a consecutive reaction model is developed to estimate the biochar yield and elemental composition in a biomass torrefaction process. Norway forest residues were chosen as feedstock and torrefied at different temperatures under nitrogen atmosphere in a thermogravimetric analyzer. Obtained data were modeled to predict the mass loss during torrefaction. Distributions of initial, intermediate and final solid products as well as torrefaction kinetic parameters are reported. Thereafter, a direct method to predict the elemental composition of biochar is introduced. The results show that the decomposition of initial biomass to form an intermediate solid has higher conversion rate than the degradation of the intermediate. Moreover, the predictions reproduce well the experimental thermogravimetric curves and show composition trends similar to the literature data. This method is useful for the design and optimization of industrial torrefaction processes with predictable biochar yield and elemental composition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-246
Number of pages8
JournalBioresource technology
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Sep 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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