Main content area

Physical Activation of Rice Husk Pyrolysis Char for the Production of High Surface Area Activated Carbons

Alvarez, Jon, Lopez, Gartzen, Amutio, Maider, Bilbao, Javier, Olazar, Martin
Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research 2015 v.54 no.29 pp. 7241-7250
adsorbents, carbon, carbon dioxide, engineering, gasification, oxidants, porosity, porous media, pyrolysis, rice hulls, silica, sodium carbonate, steam, surface area
A study has been performed on the production of high quality activated carbon from rice husk char obtained by flash pyrolysis in a conical spouted bed reactor. In order to enhance both the quality of the adsorbents obtained and the economy of the process, the amorphous silica contained in the char has been recovered with Na₂CO₃. Subsequently, the resulting carbonaceous material has been subjected to physical activation at 800 °C using steam and carbon dioxide as activating agents. Although the maximum BET surface areas obtained with carbon dioxide and steam are similar, 1514 and 1365 m² g–¹, respectively, significant differences are observed in the performance of the two oxidizers. Thus, steam gasification kinetics is faster than that of carbon dioxide. The carbons produced by activation using both steam and carbon dioxide have a wide pore size distribution, with microporous structure being more developed when the latter is used.