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Coprocessing of Agricultural Plastic Waste and Switchgrass via Tail Gas Reactive Pyrolysis
- Dorado, Christina, Mullen, Charles A., Boateng, Akwasi A.
- Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research 2015 v.54 no.40 pp. 9887
- Panicum virgatum, USDA, carbon, carbon monoxide, engineering, ethylene, gases, hay, hydrogen, oils, oxygen, plastics, polyethylene, pyrolysis, temperature, wastes, United States
- Pyrolysis of mixtures of agricultural plastic waste in the form of polyethylene hay bale covers (PE) (4–37%) and switchgrass were investigated using the US Department of Agriculture’s tail gas reactive pyrolysis (TGRP) process at different temperatures (400–570 °C). TGRP of switchgrass and plastic mixtures significantly reduced the formation of waxy solids that are produced during regular pyrolysis. Under an atmosphere of approximately 70% recycled tail gas, mostly noncondensable gases were produced along with highly deoxygenated and aromaticized pyrolysis oil. When the atmosphere was diluted further to a recycled tail gas concentration of about 55%, higher yields of liquid product were achieved but with less deoxygenation. TGRP of low plastic mixtures (4–8%) produced oils with increased carbon and reduced oxygen content compared to the fast pyrolysis of switchgrass alone. Noncondensable gas fractions containing high concentrations of H₂, CO, ethylene, and other light hydrocarbons remained a significant portion of the product mixture at temperatures above 500 °C.