Product yields and characteristics of corncob waste under various torrefaction atmospheres

Jau Jang Lu, Wei Hsin Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Biomass is a promising energy source due to its abundant, carbon-fixing, and carbon-neutral properties. Torrefaction can be employed to improve the properties of biomass in an oxygen-free or nitrogen atmosphere. This study investigates the product yields and the solid product characteristics from corncob waste torrefaction at the temperatures of 250 °C and 300 °C for 1 h. Nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and a gas mixture of air and carbon dioxide are employed as the carrier gases. The solid product characteristics approach those of coal at the higher temperature, regardless of what the carrier gases are. The fixed carbon, higher heating value, and solid and energy yields using carbon dioxide as a carrier gas at 300 °C are close to those using nitrogen. The product safety and storage properties before and after torrefaction are revealed by the measurements of ignition temperature and hygroscopicity. A higher torrefaction temperature leads to a higher ignition temperature of treated biomass, except using the mixture of air and carbon dioxide as the carrier gas. Carbon dioxide is a better carrier gas than nitrogen for biomass torrefaction, from the storage and transportation points of view.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-27
Number of pages15
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jan

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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