Effect of feed composition of co-pyrolysis of corncobs-polypropylene plastic on mass interaction between biomass particles and plastics

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Polypropylene plastic (PP), which has higher hydrogen content compared to that in biomass, is potential to be used as a cheap hydrogen source for pyrolysis of biomass, such as corncobs, to remove part of oxygen content in the biomass pyrolysis oil. By charging these two materials, synergistic effects will appear that improve quality and quantity of bio-oil produced. The aim of the present work is to investigate possible mass interaction between biomass and plastic materials leading to the synergistic effects using slow co-pyrolysis. The experiment was performed in a displacement reactor. Feed composition was varied at 12.5%, 25%, 37.5%, 50%, 62.5%, 75%, and 87.5% weight of PP. This phenomenon was observed through expansion-contraction of the reactor prior to large mass decomposition of the reactor feed. In experiment involving biomass-dominated feeds, i.e. PP contents < 50% (regime 1), there was reactor bed contraction due to slight biomass decomposition followed by no-displacement of reactor piston. During the contraction, it is estimated, there was low velocity ejection of biomass volatile matter, while during no-displacement stage, there was a phase change of plastic granules to plastic melt. In experiment with plastic-dominated feeds, i.e. PP ≥ 50% (regime 2), the reactor bed underwent contraction due to phase change of plastic granules which reduced the bed volume, followed by bed expansion due to the swelling of biomass particles estimated in the presence of hydrogen bonding in the phenolic environment in biomass material. The last stage of co-pyrolysis in regime 2 was the bed contraction and it is predicted that there was high velocity gas ejection through the small pores which intensified interaction of biomass-plastic radicals in hydrogen-rich environment favourable for exerting synergistic effect.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012049
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jan 2018
Event2nd International Tropical Renewable Energy Conference, i-TREC 2017 - Bali, Indonesia
Duration: 3 Oct 20174 Oct 2017


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