Physical Properties of Biomass Fuel Briquette from Oil Palm Residues
Palm Kernel Shell (PKS) and Mesocarp Fibre (MF) were used for the production of fuel briquettes in this study in order to supplement the energy mix of the nation. PKS was pulverized and then sieved into different grain particles of 350 μm, 250 μm and 150 μm, before mixing with MF in the ratios: 90:10, 80:20 and 70:30 (PKS: MF respectively). Cassava Peel (CP) was used as binder for the briquettes. A 200 kN force was exerted during densification while the waiting time for the briquettes to properly form was 120 seconds. Proximate/physical analysis was carried out and the results showed that briquette series of 150 μm (80:20) has the minimum moisture content of 6.00 % while series 350 μm (90:10) recorded the lowest ash content of 1.50 %. Volatile matter of 72.80 % was recorded from series 150 μm (70:30) as the highest of all the series produced. Briquette series of 350 μm (70:30) have the highest fixed carbon and calorific value of 19.90 % and 18.1063 kJ/g, respectively. The results showed that the fuel briquettes from PKS and MF (especially 350 μm series) could serve as alternative source of energy for domestic and industrial applications.
Keywords: Palm kernel shell; Mesocarp fibre; Briquette; Biomass solid fuel; proximate analysis.