Characterization of char from slow pyrolysis of sewage sludge

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

The effects of final pyrolysis temperature Tend from 300 ºC to 550 ºC, heating rates β of 2 ºC/min, 3 ºC/min and 5 ºC/min, retention time RT from 45 min to 90 min, and the moisture content MC from 0 to 70% on characteristics of the pyrolysis char from sewage sludge were investigated using a tube furnace in this study. The resulting chars were characterized by sorption of nitrogen (surface area and pore volume). Their adsorption characteristics were evaluated via iodine value and methylene blue value. Either the pore structures or adsorption characteristics depend on the pyrolysis processing and moisture content of the sludge precursors. In terms of iodine value and surface area of the char, Tend of 450 ºC, RT of 75 min and β of 3 ºC/min proved the optimum combination of pyrolysis parameters. The chars have an undeveloped mesopore and macropore structure and a developed micropore structure. The sodium phenoxide adsorption equilibrium data fit well with the Langmuir model of adsorption, suggesting monolayer coverage of sodium phenoxide molecules at the surface of the char. Its adsorption mechanism is mainly physical in nature, enhanced by chemisorption.

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