I am PhD student in Environmental Engineering in Gebze Technical University, Turkey.  My PhD study focuses on treatment of emissions especially coming from thermochemical conversion of biomass for energy. 

I applied to bioenergy2020+ for BRISK2 action because I think especially Lab Reactor is a very advanced system for measuring emissions from thermochemical conversions. Besides that, operating Drop Tube could help to understand behaviour of feedstock under combustion conditions for bigger scale. Lastly using TGA is important for observing thermochemical behaviour of feedstock.   

Since sewage sludge has high ash content and relatively low heating value, sewage sludge is very problematic waste for wastewater treatment plants. Using sewage sludge as a feedstock is very important for sustainability. Thus, I want to investigate pyrolysis and combustion behaviour of this feedstock. As it has high ash content and relatively low calorific value, adjunct fuel (wood pellets) are mixed with sewage sludge with various ratios (100-0 50-50, 0-100; sewage sludge-wood pellets). Purpose of mixing feedstock is to help reducing average ash content and increasing average heating value of sewage sludge feedstock. Thereby it is targeted to find more sustainable way for sewage sludge disposal.  

My question was: “What will be cumulative effect if we combust or pyrolyze mixed sewage sludge and wood pellets together”. We expected to see some catalytic effect of mixed feedstock under combustion or pyrolysis conditions. 

Experiments were carried out in 3 different rigs. Firstly, 1 kg feedstocks were combusted in drop tube reactor in batch mode. Emissions were observed during combustion process and ashes were analysed after experiments. Then feedstocks were analysed in TGA to observe thermochemical behaviours. Lastly, experiments were carried out in Lab Reactor in combustion and pyrolysis conditions to determine the characteristics of emissions. After the experiments, phase distributions of elements inside the feedstock were also investigated. Comparing results of Lab reactor to Drop Tube reactor were useful to understand concept of scaling up.  

I feel lucky to have an opportunity to see such pyrolysis and combustion units. Especially FT-IR, ND-IR, FID, CLD and heat conductivity analysers in Lab Reactor opened up my horizon. Preparing samples, getting to know analysers, working with professionals in another country etc. were very big experience for me. Employees in bioenergy2020+ shared their experiences with me all time during my stay. Since I tried to follow every detail from preparing feedstock to preparing ash samples, I learnt a lot. I would like to thank bioenergy2020+ team again. 

My BRISK experience in bioenergy2020+ was informative and promotive for my PhD study. BRISK2 action motivated me for thermochemical conversions of biomass. I would like to thank to BRISK2 community for giving me opportunity to work and to meet with people who are in different disciplines.