Research is undertaken in the laboratory into the characterisation of fuels and process optimisation, using traditional combustion technologies and innovative processes such as pyrolysis and gasification. The applications are designed for pilot plants or full-scale plants for district heating and combined heat and power generation. Using state-of-the-art experimental techniques, analyses of wood biomass and biofuels are carried out: moisture analysis of ashes, elemental analysis (CHNS/O), calorimetric analysis, surface area analysis (BET), gas chromatography and mass spectrometry.
Innovative systems for optimising the process of combined heat and power systems based on wood biomass, in particular the gasification and the pyrolysis process, are realised and tested on a laboratory scale. Process simulations are performed using thermodynamic, kinetic and fluid dynamics models. In collaboration with companies, researchers provide scientific support for the design, planning and optimisation of pilot and demonstration plants of wood-biomass-based combined heat and power systems. The focus here is on the recycling concept of the circular economy: by installing innovative absorbers and catalytic converters, special attention is paid to efficient filter systems and the exploitation of process waste.
Researchers also provide advice on the development and technological optimisation of full scale combined biomass heat and power plants through monitoring and on-site diagnostics. In doing so, they resort to the methods for characterising energetic and ecological performance provided by national and European standards. They analyse mass flows, the quality of the fuel input, the generation of useful energy and the by-products generated by the process.
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