Upgrading of fast pyrolysis oils by hot filtration

  • Jürgen Sitzmann

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


A hot filtration unit downstream of a 1kg/h fluidised bed fast pyrolysis reactor was designed and built. The filter unit operates at 450oC and consists of 1 exchangeable filter candle with reverse pulse cleaning system. Hot filtration experiments up to 7 hours were performed with beech wood as feedstock. It was possible to produce fast pyrolysis oils with a solid content below 0.01 wt%. The additional residence time of the pyrolysis vapours and secondary vapour cracking on the filter cake caused an increase of non-condensable gases at the expense of organic liquid yield. The oils produced with hot filtration showed superior quality properties regarding viscosity than standard pyrolysis oils. The oils were analysed by rotational viscosimetry and gel permeation chromatography before and after accelerated aging. During filtration the separated particulates accumulate on the candle surface and build up the filter cake. The filter cake leads to an increase in pressure drop between the raw gas and the clean gas side of the filter candle. At a certain pressure drop the filter cake has to be removed by reverse pulse cleaning to regenerate the pressure drop. The experiments showed that successful pressure drop recovery was possible during the initial filtration cycles, thereafter further cycles showed minor pressure drop recovery and therefore a steady increase in differential pressure. Filtration with pre-coating the candle to form an additional layer between the filter candle and cake resulted in total removal of the dust cake.
Date of Award2009
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorTony Bridgwater (Supervisor)


  • Upgrading
  • fast pyrolysis oils
  • hot filtration

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