Biomass pyrolysis in a heated-grid reactor: Visualization of carbon monoxide and formaldehyde using Laser-Induced Fluorescence

M. J. Prins, Zhongshan Li, R. J. M. Bastiaans, J. A. van Oijen, Marcus Aldén, L. P. H. de Goey

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16 Citations (SciVal)


The development of improved biomass pyrolysis models is vital for more accurate modelling and design of biomass conversion equipment. Such improved models must be based on reliable experimental data: biomass should be pyrolyzed at high heating rates and the reaction products should be measured using an on-line, non-intrusive method. Therefore, a heated grid reactor with heating rate of 300-600 K/s was used to study pyrolysis of biomass at temperatures in the range of 500-700 degrees C. The formation of formaldehyde and carbon monoxide from wood at high heating rates was successfully visualized using Laser-Induced Fluorescence (LIF). A thin vertical laser line or sheet was present directly above the biomass lying on the heated grid. Two-photon excitation at 230 nm was applied to induce fluorescence of carbon monoxide present in the volatiles, whereas excitation of formaldehyde was done at 355 nm. Visualization of these compounds shows that the release rises strongly with temperature; this typically happens on a timescale in the order of seconds. In principle, the method described allows for the determination of truly primary products. Future research is recommended, aimed at quantifying the concentrations measured by LIE. Care must be taken to calibrate for quenching of the fluorescence signal. Avoiding secondary reactions taking place in the gas phase is another experimental challenge. (C) 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-286
JournalJournal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics


  • In situ laser spectroscopy
  • Biomass pyrolysis
  • Devolatilization
  • CFD


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