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Hydrogen-rich syngas production from biomass in a steam microwave-induced plasma gasification reactor

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Article number125324
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/10/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Bioresource Technology
Number of pages8
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date24/05/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Substitution of fossil fuels by sustainable practices must be rapidly implemented to mitigate the impacts of climate change. The conversion of biomass into combustible gas is investigated in a microwave-induced plasma reactor using pure steam as the plasma working gas for the first time. The optimum results are achieved at the highest forward microwave power of 6 kW with biomass carbon conversion efficiency over 98% and complete biomass energy recovery in syngas. Unreacted steam is simply condensed out, leading to the production of a syngas with low inert dilution and high calorific value in the range 10.5–12 MJ/Nm3. The syngas produced is rich in hydrogen, exceeding 60% by volume. The proposed process could aid in the transition to a carbon neutral economy as it has the potential to efficiently convert biomass to syngas that can be used for the sustainable generation of fuels, chemicals and energy.