Characterization of date palm fronds as a fuel for energy production
This study investigated the characteristics of date palm fronds (DPF) for their use as a feedstock for fuel and energy production. The calorific values and elemental contents of the DPF samples were measured through proximate analysis, ultimate analysis and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. For proximate analysis, thermo-gravimetric analysis technique was used to identify the moisture content, volatile matter, fixed carbon and ash content. Ultimate analysis was used to determine the weight percentage of carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen. In line with this, X-ray fluorescence was used to determine the percentage of sulfur in the tested samples. The results of the conducted study were compared with other biomass reported in the past literature. The fixed carbon content of DPF was found lower than the other biomass except rice husk. Ajwah DPF exhibited the highest carbon content of 14.1%, while Jeddah DPF showed lowest carbon content of 5.2% among all the tested samples. However, presence of the metallic elements in the samples, such as Mg and Na can cause problems in the thermo-chemical processing systems.
KEY WORDS: Date palm fronds, Biomass, Proximate analysis, Ultimate analysis, Calorific value, Elemental content
Bull. Chem. Soc. Ethiop. 2016, 30(3), 465-472