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Material Information

Publication is pending faculty approval
Series Title:
Journal of Undergraduate Research
Alternate Title:
Summer Focus on the Physical Sciences and Quantitative Research: Optimization of the Production of Biochar Using Thermogravimetric Analysis
Bartholet, Danielle
Gao, Bin
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla.
University of Florida
Publication Date:


serial ( sobekcm )


Biochar, the solid product of biomass pyrolysis, can be used as a soil amendment for agricultural applications. Biochar is also being investigated as a possible tool for carbon sequestration. Optimizing the production of biochar, and therefore minimizing the energy input for production, increases the potential to create a carbon negative or carbon neutral process. The purpose of this study was to determine an ideal pyrolysis process for the production of biochar by identifying the heating conditions (temperature and rate) that would produce the highest yields of a solid product. Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) was used to study the thermal decomposition of switchgrass feedstock at three peak temperatures (300, 450, and 600°C) and three heating rates (5c/min, 10c/min, 20c/min). The biochar yields were highest when heated to 300C and lowest when heated to 600°C. A relationship was also found between heating rate and yield, with faster heating rates producing larger yields. Additional experiments will be required to understand the relationship between heating rate and biochar production, as well as properties of the feedstock and resulting biochar.

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Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
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