The use of biomass in the energy industry is the consequence of ongoing efforts to replace Energy from fossil fuels with energy from renewable sources. However, due to the diversity of the biomass, its use as a solid fuel generates waste with diverse and unstable chemical composition. Waste from biomass combustion is a raw material with a very diverse composition, even in the case of using only one type of biomass. The content of individual elements in fly ash from the combustion of biomass ranges from zero to tens of percent. This makes it difficult to determine the optimal recovery methods. The ashes from the combustion of biomass are most commonly used in the production of building materials and agriculture. This article presents the elemental composition of the most commonly used biomass fuels. The results of the analysis of elemental composition of fly ashes from the combustion of forest and agricultural biomass in fluidized bed boilers used in the commercial power industry were presented. These ashes are characterized by a high content of calcium (12.3–19.4%), silicon (1.2–8.3%), potassium (0.05–1.46%), chlorine (1.1–6.1%), and iron (0.8–6.5%). The discussed ashes contained no sodium. Aluminum was found only in one of the five ashes. Manganese, chromium, copper, nickel, lead, zinc, sulfur, bismuth, titanium and zirconium were found in all of the examined ashes. The analysis of elemental composition may allow for a preliminary assessment of the recovery potential of a given ash.
The problem of of the use of fly ash still constitutes a research and exploration area for scientists. This is due to the fact that, 6,000,000 Mg of coal combustion by-products (CCB) are storage on landfills yearly in Poland alone. One of the potential directions of using fly ash is to use it as a substrate in hydrothermal syntheses of mesoporous materials (synthetic zeolites). Zeolites are aluminosilicates with a spatial structure. Due to their specific structure they are characterized by a number of specific properties among others molecular-sieve, ion-exchange and catalytic that can be used in engineering and environmental protection. So far, the synthesis has been carried out using coal combustion by-products such as fly ash or microsphere. The article analyzes whether separation from the fly ash of the appropriate fraction (below 63 μm) will affect the formation of zeolite grains. The syntheses were carried out using class F fly ash and the fraction separated from it, which was obtained by sieving the ash through a 63 μm sieve. Chemical (XRF) and mineralogical (XRD, SEM-EDS) analyzes were carried out for substrates as well as the obtained reaction products. In the case of substrates, the analysis did not show any significant differences between the ash and the separated fraction. However, in products after synthesis (Na-X zeolite with a small amount of Na-P1 zeolite, and small amounts of quartz and unreacted aluminosilicate glass - mullite) higher aluminum and sodium contents were observed from the separated fraction, with a lower calcium and potassium content. A small proportion of illite was observed on the diffraction curve of the zeolite from the fraction. Observations of grain morphology showed no differences in formation. Based on the conducted analyzes, it can be stated that, considering the economics of the synthesis process, the separation of fine fractions from the fly ash does not affect the quality of the synthesis process.
The issue of mercury emission and the need to take action in this direction was noticed in 2013 via the Minamata Convention. Therefore, more and more often, work and new law regulations are commencing to reduce this chemical compound from the environment. The paper presents the problem of removing mercury from waste gases due to new BREF/BAT restrictions, in which the problem of the need to look for new, more efficient solutions to remove this pollution was also indicated. Attention is paid to the problem of the occurrence of mercury in the exhaust gases in the elemental form and the need to carry out laboratory tests. A prototype installation for the sorption of elemental mercury in a pure gas stream on solid sorbents is presented. The installation was built as part of the LIDER project, financed by the National Center for Research and Development in a project entitled: “The Application of Waste Materials From the Energy Sector to Capture Mercury Gaseous Forms from Flue Gas”. The installation is used for tests in laboratory conditions in which the carrier gas of elemental mercury is argon. The first tests on the zeolite sorbent were made on the described apparatus. The tested material was synthetic zeolite X obtained as a result of a two-stage reaction of synthesis of fly ash type C with sodium hydroxide. Due to an increase, the chemical affinity of the tested material in relation to mercury, the obtained zeolite material was activated with silver ions (Ag+) by an ion exchange using silver nitrate (AgNO3). The first test was specified for a period of time of about 240 minutes. During this time, the breakthrough of the tested zeolite material was not recorded, and therefore it can be concluded that the tested material may be promising in the development of new solutions for capturing mercury in the energy sector. The results presented in this paper may be of interest to the energy sector due to the solution of several environmental aspects. The first of them is mercury sorption tests for the development of new exhaust gases treatment technologies. On the other hand, the second aspect raises the possibility of presenting a new direction for the management and utilization of combustion by-products such as fly ash.
The exploitation and processing of lignite in the Bełchatów region is connected with the formation of various mineral waste materials: varied in origin, mineral and chemical composition and raw material properties of the accompanying minerals, ashes and slags from lignite combustion and reagipsum from wet flue gas desulphurisation installations. This paper presents the results of laboratory tests whose main purpose was to obtain data referring to the potential use of fly ashes generated in the Bełchatów Power Plant and selected accompanying minerals exploited in the Bełchatów Mine in the form of self-solidification mixtures. The beidellite clays were considered as the most predisposed for use from the accompanying minerals , due to pozzolanic and sorption properties and swelling capacity. Despite the expected beneficial effects of clay minerals from the smectite group on the self-settling process as well as the stability of such blends after solidification, the results of physical-mechanical tests (compressive strength and water repellence) were unsatisfactory. It was necessary to use Ca (OH)2, obtained from the lacustrine chalk as an activator of the self-settling process It was necessary to use lacustrine chalk as an activator of the self-solidification process. The presence of calcium will allow the formation of cement phases which will be able to strongly bond the skeletal grains. Also, the addition of reagipsum to the composition of the mixture would contribute to the improvement of the physico-mechanical parameters. The elevated SO4 2– ion in the mixture during the solidification allows for the crystallization of the sulphate phases in the pore space to form bridges between the ash and clay minerals. The use of mixtures in land reclamation unfavourably transformed by opencast mining in the Bełchatów region would result in measurable ecological and economic benefits and would largely solve the problem of waste disposal from the from the operation and processing of lignite energy.