Optimizing Quality of Wood Pellets Made of Hardwood Processing Residues
AbstractSmall-scale wood pellet producers often use a trial-and-error approach for determining adequate blending of available wood processing residues and pelletizing parameters. Developing general guidelines for optimizing wood pellet quality and meeting market standards would facilitate their market entry and profitability. Four types of hardwood residues, including green wood chips, dry shavings, and solid and engineered wood sawdust, were investigated to determine the optimum blends of feedstocks and pelletizing conditions to produce pellets with low friction force, high density and high mechanical strength. The feedstock properties reported in this study included particle size distribution, wood moisture content, bulk density, ash content, calorific values, hemicelluloses, lignin, cellulose, extractives, ash major and minor elements, and carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur. All residues tested could potentially be used for wood pellet production. However, high concentrations of metals, such as aluminum, could restrict their use for accessing markets for high-quality pellets. Feedstock moisture content and composition (controlled by the proportions of the various residue sources within blends) were the most important parameters that determined pellet quality, with pelletizing process parameters having less overall influence. Residue blends with a moisture content of 9%–13.5% (dry basis), composed of 25%–50% of sawdust generated by sawing of wood pieces and a portion of green chips generated by trimming of green wood, when combined with a compressive force of 2000 N or more during pelletizing, provided optimum results in terms of minimizing friction and increasing pellet density and mechanical strength. Developing formal relationships between the type of process that generates residues, the properties of residues hence generated, and the quality of wood pellets can contribute to optimize pellet production methods. View Full-Text
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Thiffault, E.; Barrette, J.; Blanchet, P.; Nguyen, Q.N.; Adjalle, K. Optimizing Quality of Wood Pellets Made of Hardwood Processing Residues. Forests 2019, 10, 607.
Thiffault E, Barrette J, Blanchet P, Nguyen QN, Adjalle K. Optimizing Quality of Wood Pellets Made of Hardwood Processing Residues. Forests. 2019; 10(7):607.Chicago/Turabian Style
Thiffault, Evelyne; Barrette, Julie; Blanchet, Pierre; Nguyen, Quy N.; Adjalle, Kokou. 2019. "Optimizing Quality of Wood Pellets Made of Hardwood Processing Residues." Forests 10, no. 7: 607.
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