Gasification of woody biomass in a novel indirectly heated bubbling fluidized bed steam reformer

C. Tsekos*, M. del Grosso, W. de Jong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)
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Within this work, a novel 50 kWth indirectly heated bubbling fluidized bed steam reformer (IHBFBSR) is presented, along with its commissioning experiments. In the IHBFBSR, heat is provided through two radiant tube natural gas burners in the bed and the freeboard area. The aim of this innovative design is sufficient heat provision for biomass steam reforming and cracking reactions and heat loss reduction, thus allowing the possibility of scaling-up to an industrial level. Experiments were performed with two woody biomass feedstocks and two bed material particle sizes under different operating conditions (steam to biomass ratio, lambda, temperature), in order to identify the setup's main characteristics. Product gas composition and quality, as well as the cold gas efficiency of the IHBFBSR were in reasonable agreement to similar systems, however carbon conversion prediction needs further improvement. H2 production and tar removal are favoured by small bed material particle sizes as well as by char accumulation in the bed area. Furthermore, air injection above the bed led to improved H2/CO ratios and lower tar yields compared to when air is used as a fluidization agent. Overall, it was shown that the IHBFBSR technology constitutes a promising development in the field of biomass allothermal gasification.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107003
Number of pages19
JournalFuel Processing Technology
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Allothermal gasification
  • Biomass
  • Steam reforming
  • Synthesis gas

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