During the transnational access to the ENEA, all planned investigations of updraft biomass gasification process were performed on two facilities that run together at the ENEA Trisaia Research Center: PRAGA and HENRY.  

PRAGA is a fully equipped gasification plant based on a 200 kWth updraft gasifier principle to test the gasification of various sort of biomass. The nominal input of the gasifier is 30-40 kg/h of feedstock. The produced gas (~ 80 Nm3/h) moves upward from the bottom of the gasifier while the biomass particles travels downwards progressively trough zones of drying, pyrolysis, reduction and combustion. Further, the producer gas goes to the gas cleaning system. The gas cleaning section is composed by a biodiesel scrubber and two coalescer filters in series. After the cleaning, the gas is destined to a flare or to a hydrogen enrichment section (HENRI).  

HENRI is the Hydrogen enrichment section connected to the 200 kWth gasification plant to sample an amount of 20 Nm3/h of the gas from the clean-up line. At the exit of the two coalescer filters, the syngas is sent to the shift conversion reactor and CO2 is removed. The gas is mixed with superheated steam and is heated up  to 300 °C by an electric heater. This mixture is sent to the WGS reactor where it is enriched in hydrogen by a catalytic reaction with Pt –CexOy.  

During the visit time it was performed fallowing tests: 

  • Almond shells gasification under steam/air atmosphere; 
  • Miscanthus pellets gasification under steam/air atmosphere; 
  • The producer gas enrichment in HENRI facility. 
  • Dedicated gas chromatographic analysis (on-line) have been assessed for gas quality and minor species characterisation.  
  • Tar samples were taken depending on the gasifier height for the off-line analysis using GC-MS and FTIR. 

This research collaboration has been a good opportunity to gain experience and interesting advances during the internship through joint research activities in the field of gasification processes. 

I would like to thank the Francesco Zimbardi, Nadia Cerone and all research group for giving me the opportunity to work with them and for all their support during my visit at ENEA.