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Characterization of ashes from different wood parts of Norway spruce tree


Woody biomass from the forest sector is an abundant resource for renewable energy generation. Conventional woody biomass materials such as timber and stem are normally high quality solid fuels for combustion applications in terms of ash related operational problems. Recently, new raw woody materials such as forest residue are gaining interests for energy production purpose. Forest residue is the remaining fraction after harvest and outtake of the wood timber, including tree tops, branches and barks. Compared to conventional woody biomass, the forest residue has a wide variation of ash content and concentration of ash forming matters. The aim of this work was to characterize and investigate different parts from Norway spruce trees regarding ash content, ash composition and ash melting and slagging behaviors. Different parts from spruce tree were studied in present work including stem wood, bark, branch and twigs. The ash content and ash melting temperature of the four fuel samples were measured through following standard procedures. Concentrations of main ash forming elements were analyzed by an inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES). The ashes from stem wood, bark and twigs were further investigated by a scanning electron microscopy equipped with energy dispersive X-Ray analysis (SEMEDX) and X-Ray diffractometry (XRD). The results showed that the branches and twigs contain higher contents of ash forming matters than that of the stem wood. Chemical compositions of ashes from four parts of the spruce tree are dominated by Ca, K, and Si. The K and Na contents in the branches and twigs are significantly higher than that of stem wood and bark, indicating high tendency of ash melting and slagging. The melting points of ashes from branch and twigs were 100-200 °C lower than those of the ashes from stem wood and bark, respectively. SEM-EDX and XRD analysis, melting of ashes from branch and twigs are mainly attributed to formation and fusion of low temperature melting alkali silicates. Copyright © 2014,AIDIC Servizi S.r.l.


Academic article


  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 193817





  • SINTEF Energy Research / Termisk energi
  • Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research



Published in

Chemical Engineering Transactions




AIDIC - associazione italiana di ingegneria chimica




37 - 42

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