The Effect of Environmental Conditions on the Degradation Behavior of Biomass Pellets

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Abstract

Biomass pellets provide a pivotal opportunity in promising energy transition scenarios as a renewable source of energy. A large share of the current utilization of pellets is facilitated by intensive global trade operations. Considering the long distance between the production site and the end-user locations, pellets may face fluctuating storage conditions, resulting in their physical and chemical degradation. We tested the effect of different storage conditions, from freezing temperatures (−19 °C) to high temperature (40 °C) and humidity conditions (85% relative humidity), on the physicochemical properties of untreated and torrefied biomass pellets. Moreover, the effect of sudden changes in the storage conditions on pellet properties was studied by moving the pellets from the freezing to the high temperature and relative humidity conditions and vice versa. The results show that, although storage at one controlled temperature and RH may degrade the pellets, a change in the temperature and relative humidity results in higher degradation in terms of higher moisture uptake and lower mechanical strength.
Original languageEnglish
Article number970
Number of pages15
JournalPolymers
Volume12
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • biomass pellets
  • storage effects
  • mechanical durability
  • heating value
  • equilibrium moisture content

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