• Coal characterisation underway at the IFRF Isothermal Plug Flow Reactor

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Within the framework of the Members Research Project “Solid Fuel Database” IFRF, in collaboration with ENEL, is currently undertaking an experimental campaign on coal characterisation.  The objective of this campaign is to fully characterise three types of coal: a South African varity, an Indonesian variety (Sebuku), and anthracite.

The trials involve devolatilisation tests, char production and char combustion tests. The resulting data will be inserted in the IFRF solid fuel database.  At the same time, certain important combustion indices such as Kobayashi will be evaluated.

This is the first experimental campaign on the IPFR since the IFRF moved to Italy. The IPFR is a 4m long drop tube and it can be used to characterise many kinds of solid fuels. The IFRF carried out combustion tests on this rig for years when it was based in the Netherlands and the data collected constitutes the core of the information in the solid fuel database (Go to http://www.library.ifrf.net/archive.html to find the existing reports from past experimental campaigns at the IPFR.)

At the end of 2006 the IPFR was moved to Italy where it was rebuilt. Due to the change of safety regulations at ENEL, it has been necessary to change many parts of the existing plant and to design some new solutions. After an extensive commissioning phase, the Isothermal Plug Flow Reactor is now fully functional and operating, ready to provide researchers with fundamental information about solid fuel properties.

The current trial is expected to continue for two more weeks.  A detailed report of the results will be published at the beginning of 2010.