Thermal properties of biochars derived from Waste biomass generated by agricultural and forestry sectors

Xing Yang, Hailong Wang, Peter James Strong, Song Xu, Shujuan Liu, Kouping Lu, Kuichuan Sheng, Jia Guo, Lei Che, Lizhi He, Yong Sik Ok, Guodong Yuan, Ying Shen, Xin Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


Waste residues produced by agricultural and forestry industries can generate energy and are regarded as a promising source of sustainable fuels. Pyrolysis, where waste biomass is heated under low-oxygen conditions, has recently attracted attention as a means to add value to these residues. The material is carbonized and yields a solid product known as biochar. In this study, eight types of biomass were evaluated for their suitability as raw material to produce biochar. Material was pyrolyzed at either 350 ?C or 500 ?C and changes in ash content, volatile solids, fixed carbon, higher heating value (HHV) and yield were assessed. For pyrolysis at 350 ?C, significant correlations (p < 0.01) between the biochars' ash and fixed carbon content and their HHVs were observed. Masson pine wood and Chinese fir wood biochars pyrolyzed at 350 ?C and the bamboo sawdust biochar pyrolyzed at 500 ?C were suitable for direct use in fuel applications, as reflected by their higher HHVs, higher energy density, greater fixed carbon and lower ash contents. Rice straw was a poor substrate as the resultant biochar contained less than 60% fixed carbon and a relatively low HHV. Of the suitable residues, carbonization via pyrolysis is a promising technology to add value to pecan shells and Miscanthus.

Original languageEnglish
Article number469
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Apr 2
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments: This study was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21577131, 41401338), the Natural Science Foundation of Zhejiang Province, China (LZ15D010001), Zhejiang Chengbang Landscape Co. Ltd., Hangzhou, China, and the Special Funding for the Introduced Innovative R&D Team of Dongguan (2014607101003), China. We thank Baoqi Chen and Yanhui Lin for their technical assistance.


  • Biochar
  • Biomass
  • Higher heating value (HHV)
  • Proximate analysis
  • Renewable energy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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