(215e) Mechanical and Flow Characterization of Loblolly Pine Residues
AIChE Annual Meeting
2022 Annual Meeting
Sustainable Engineering Forum
Feedstock Conversion Interface Consortium – Understanding Feedstock Variability to Enable Next Generation Biorefineries (Invited Talks)
Monday, November 14, 2022 - 4:46pm to 5:05pm
Large scale production of bioenergy requires diverse biomass resources with a range of chemical, physical, and mechanical properties. For biomass feeding and handling unit operations, the inhomogeneous, elastic, and cohesive nature poses challenges during for reliable transport. To improve operational reliability, it is essential to accurately characterize the mechanical and physical properties, and flow performance of these diverse resources. This work overviews the impact of material attributes (particle size, moisture, anatomical tissue distribution) on rotational shear, compressibility and elastic recovery, and flow performance in a wedge hopper. Shear tests are conducted on a rotary shear tester (Schulze-style tester), while compressibility and elastic recovery were characterized from a uniaxial consolidation test. Flow was evaluated in a customized wedge hopper with variable wall inclination angle and discharge opening at a pilot scale of 1-10 tonnes/hr. Stepwise statistical regression was used to show the relative impact of explanatory factors for the measured properties including particle size, distribution, moisture content, particle shape factors, and distribution of relative anatomical tissue components. These finding are discussed in the context of feedstock variability, their potential mitigation in material preprocessing, and how these variable properties translate to flow handling challenges that are facing nascent biorefinery operations.