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Biomass utilization for energy purposes in Kenya: Fuel characteristics and thermochemical properties
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Applied Physics and Electronics.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (university diploma), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

About forty percent of the world´s population, mostly inhabitants of countries with developing economies, rely on the traditional usage of biomass for energy purposes. The major negative consequences are environmental and health effects. Additionally, the most remarkable social consequence is rural poverty which is directly linked to lack of access to electricity. This places the questions related to biomass utilization for energy production at the core of global welfare.The present work was performed as a part of a larger research project funded by Formas and which involves Swedish and Kenyan partners. The aim of this study was to gather basic knowledge about the characteristics of relevant biomass from sub-Saharan Africa, more specifically from Kenya. Eight different types of biomass, including agroforestry trees, agricultural residues and water hyacinth, were evaluated according to fuel characteristics and thermochemical properties. Ultimate and proximate analyses of the collected biomass were carried out, in addition to heating values analyses. Moreover, the biomass was pelletized and a thermogravimetric analysis was performed in a single pellet reactor. Finally, the composition of the residual ashes was determined. The results show that there was a large variation in the fuel characteristics and thermochemical behaviour of the studied agricultural residues and water hyacinth biomass types, whereas agroforestry trees had rather similar properties and thermochemical behaviour when combusted at the same temperature. In addition, results from the ash composition analyses showed large differences among the studied biomass types, which can be used to better predict and solve problems related to the combustion of these biomass types.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 36 p.
Keyword [en]
Bioenergy, Countries with developing economies, Wood, Agricultural residues, Thermochemical behaviour
National Category
Energy Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-126838OAI: diva2:1037533
Subject / course
Educational program
Bachelor of Science Programme in Energy Engineering
Available from: 2016-10-17 Created: 2016-10-17 Last updated: 2016-10-17Bibliographically approved

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