Catalytic influence of mineral compounds on the reactivity of cellulose-derived char in O2-, CO2-, and H2O-containing atmospheres

Christin Pflieger, Katrin Lotz, Nikoline Hilse, Cornelius M. Berger, Martin Schiemann, Paulo Amaral Debiagi, Christian Hasse, Viktor Scherer, Martin Muhler

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The catalytic effects of mineral compounds on the conversion of a biomass-derived char in air- and oxyfuel-related atmospheres were investigated by thermogravimetric analysis at atmospheric pressure. The applied char originated from the hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) of cellulose followed by pyrolysis at 1073 K and subsequent mixing with 20 wt% of minerals by grinding to achieve tight contact. The reactivities of the mineral-loaded HTC chars were evaluated based on isothermal experiments in O2-, CO2-, and H2O-containing atmospheres as a function of their composition applying a magnetic suspension balance. The reactivity sequence K2CO3 > Na2CO3 ≫ Fe2O3 > CaO > MgO ≥ mineral-free was derived consistently for char oxidation in O2/inert as well as for char gasification in diluted H2O and CO2 mixtures. In addition to this qualitative assessment, the kinetic experiments were first modelled based on a simple global nth-order power-law rate expression. Then, the more complex Carbon Burnout Kinetics (CBK/G) model and the PoliMi model were applied. All three modeling approaches enabled a systematic quantification of the catalytic effects and led to a comparable lowering in the apparent activation energy. In combination with the kinetic parameters determined for the mineral-free char, the lowered apparent activation energies specific for the applied mineral and atmosphere facilitate the implementation of catalytic effects on the conversion of biomass-derived char into combustion models.

Original languageEnglish
Article number119584
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomass-derived char
  • Catalytic effect
  • Char conversion
  • Minerals
  • Oxyfuel combustion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering (all)
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Organic Chemistry


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