Assessment of suitable energy conversion scenarios of common reeds, Phragmites australis
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The aim of this work, inserted in the frame of SuWaRest (Sustainable Water management and wetland Restoration in settlements of continental-arid Central Asia) project, is the individuation and feasibility evaluation of different scenarios of energy conversion of reeds (Phragmites australis), keeping into account torrefaction, pyrolysis and gasification paths. An enhanced gas-solid equilibrium model has been used in order to estimate the theoretical yield and the equilibrium composition of the reaction products (syngas and char) of pyrolysis and gasification processes. In order to evaluate the benefit of a torrefaction pre-treatment, the thermodynamic model has been coupled with a multiphase kinetic model calibrated with experimental data and able to predict solid, liquid and gaseous conversions in the torrefaction process. The experimental validation of the models results will be performed in a laboratory plant, which preliminary design is here presented. Reeds seem to be a suitable biomass for energy purposes and, thanks to its high abundance in the studied areas, could be an interesting energy source. A detailed economic analysis is request in order to give a reliable assessment of the process sustainability and to understand if reeds could represent - at least locally and in relation to the study sites - an alternative to the use of coal. The results of the present work will be crucial for this purpose.