i have an urgent suggestion:
when designing and building a flame-cap kiln,
if you're gonna quench that bed of hot coals,
DO NOT DUMP THE LIQUID.
instead, capture that darkened fluid and save it.
it is a precious resource with multiple amazing uses.
anyone serious about plant & soil culture will discover quench water
has special properties & dramatic effects on soils, microbea, plants & fertilizrs.
quench has a wide assortment of every size carbon molecules
– fragments shattered & splintered off the charred biomass.
– from nanocarbon micromolecules up to larger macromolecules
suspended & dissolved in the water, with a mix of plant friendly minerals.
these biocarbon fragments were cooked at high temperature
– essentially pyrolyzed under the flame cap in low oxygen atmosphere
– thoroughly reduced, stripped of oxygen & electrons
– with lots of sharp edges and points to collect & focus electric charge.
think of this as a char equivalent to humic & fulvic extracts from humates,
but even better.
this kind of polycyclic biocarbon is very water-friendly; the two will blend nicely,
improving the characteristics each.
any foliar spray or compost tea will benefit from a dose of this microcarbon solution,
and will capture, hold, carry & deliver any liquid nutrients added,
especially ions, and increase mobility into plant tissue.
think of this liquid carbon as a base matrix to add other substances to.
plants can drink in this ultrafine carbon to circulate inside;
any larger carbon molecules with leave a nanofine film on the leaves
– seems to act like sunshade (optical) & insulation (thermal).
spray or drench soil with this solution will get excellent penetration
even heavy, tight clay will get optimum carbon movement to alter soil structure.
actually, tiny bit of ultrafine clay will enhance this substance,
especially for sandy soil (think desert).
understanding the potential benefit & value of this liquid nano & micro carbon molecules,
it makes sense to design equipment to efficiently create & capture this quench fluid.
some way to drain it off easily, efficiently into a container.
then design simple screen operations to sieve out different grades of carbon material.
collection & capture of this range of carbon molecules is affected by water's vorticity.
another product development challenge is to create concentrated nano & microchar solutions.
or to create dried, graded nano & micro char powders.
but hey, you gotta alot of heat coming off your kiln;
put that heat to use boiling down solutions;
i flash on the design maple or molasses syrup boiler tables/benches,
with steam rising off a thin fluid film flowing over a metal evaporator.
for a green & peaceful planet,
On Sun, Dec 8, 2019 at 2:10 PM Kelpie Wilson <kelpiew@...
There are a few different ways to go here. First consideration needs to be quenching. How will you put it out? With no solid bottom, you cannot flood quench. Your options will be to snuff it with a lid and dirt to seal the edges, or to open the kiln at the end, dump the char, spread it thin while spraying with a hose.
We came up with a design called the Ring of Fire that uses three curved steel panels to make a cylinder. There are flanges that you clamp together to make it air tight. It has a lid for snuffing and it works very well because it is made to close tolerances so it does not leak air (won't hold water though). However, it cost $1000 to make. You can do the same thing with sheets of roofing bolted together to make a cylinder, but you can't snuff quench it because it leaks air.
Cylinders are actually very nice for making biochar. The tall walls act like an afterburner, holding heat in, so they often burn much cleaner than a trough or shallower pan like the Oregon Kiln. See the work of Dolph Cook in Australia.
We also have some folks who are using flat steel panels, heavier gauge than roofing steel, that they bolt together into polygon shapes - hexagon or octagon.
Those work fine and can be very large, but same problem with quenching. The only way to do it is to open the kiln, spread thin and spray with water. I will try to get some pictures of those up on wilsonbiochar.com
. I will try to get to that this evening.
Time zone: Pacific Time, USA