Date   

Re: Preventing escaping gases #tlud #technology

Ian McChesney
 

Hi Dick,


Good to see you are still going at this ! We last corresponded in 2013. You have had many suggestionson this, but I’ll offer a few thoughts anyway :


Horizontal : to prevent gas and smoke after 8hrs you need to switch from flame cap operation to conventional retort mode to complete the burn. Essentially you use the flame cap to fully dry the feedstock and then char a full kiln under pyrolysis conditions. This gives you a chance to meet your public obligations on smell and visibles.


From our experience the acrid vapours you refer to are self-generated from temperatures as low 160’C once the feedstock is dry and and has been held at these temperatures for 6 hours, or more. This means that going into a burn, and coming out of a burn, there is a risk. The trick is to get in, and out, of the pyrolysis stage relatively quickly which can be difficult with large cylinders and unregulated internal circulation. Flame cap gets you ‘in’, but how to get ‘out’ ? 


With a slot in the tank you have the option of rolling it over to empty it. I would have a trench dug for this with a water spray sitting between two short (dirt) tracks on which the tank can do a half roll.


Cut the slot a bit narrower, about 3-4’, and make this strip of metal into 6 (pr more) overlapping swing doors hinged on the rolling side. In ‘Flame Cap’ these doors will be open and guide the material in off your bucket. In ‘Pyrolysis’ these doors will be dropped shut and you will seal them with a liquid clay sand mix applied on top (this may need a frame to retain it). When the kiln is rolled this will fall off before the char falls out as the doors swing open. These are your ‘explosion’ vents if all goes wrong so they are not latched in any way - just closed by weight.   


To operate in pyrolysis mode you will need some air ports along the bottom (opposite the rolling side with some refractory lining to protect the tank metal) to let in air and a decent flare + afterburner with an LPG pilot / supplementary air fan to get a clean burn. This could be plumbed in at the top, or at the end (s), and will be disconnected prior to rolling. 


At 8am start filling through the slot with the doors open, using air through the open ports to get the fire going. Close the ports and fill to the top by 2pm. By 3pm you can start closing the doors and open the flare. At 4pm you have the doors closed and can partially open the ports, depending on how much heat and gas you need. By 8pm you should have burnt off ‘peak gas’ and can either close the ports fully, and the flare, or leave it running gently for a few more hours. Overnight the bare tank will cool. In the morning spray the tank slowly to get the temperature down quickly. At the end of the day, when cool, roll it over to empty it. Next day roll it back and start again. 


Vertical - although Nando mentions the Brazilian DPC ‘horizontal’ process it looks like there are industrial groups, such as RIMA, developing simpler vertical solutions at the scale you are thinking of. However, as with all other solutions (BiocharNow etc) there is a (substantial) investment needed.


Avoiding this investment is tricky. Whatever you do - stay SAFE !

Regards, Ian


Ian McChesney +44 7770 796755


Re: Fundamental facts about TLUDs #technology #tlud

Hans Erken
 

For me it is all about the chimney.  I developed the TLUD in this image some years ago and it works very well and I can’t improve on it.  I have played with TLUDs that are more portable but I find lower build and less draught can easily cause the fire to lose ignition if the fuel is not perfectly dry and sized.  My design is very forgiving and we have been using it for years.

Hans

Maleny, Qld

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io [mailto:main@Biochar.groups.io] On Behalf Of Hugh McLaughlin via groups.io
Sent: Sunday, 13 September 2020 11:37 AM
To: Biochar Group
Subject: [Biochar] Fundamental facts about TLUDs

 

Dear list,

 

The basics of Tlud's are well established, if not well organized. Let me share a few of my hunches, developed over the years:

 

1) Tlud's are not chaotic. This means they follow the same path if started from the same starting point. This may seem obvious, but it is in fact a wonderful quality. It allows study and prediction of behavior. Lacking this, few studies will get far at predicting the future.

 

2) Tlud's scale linearly, but become less stable as the many amplified variables become less deterministic. This is essentially academic gibberish, but it means that the scaled predictions  are linear, but the results become less stable due to additional effects taking over.

 

3) For example, Tlud's become less stable the bigger they are - in that the linear progression of the pyrolytic front in the z-axis become less stable in the x-y axis, leading to unstable (uneven) progression of the hot zone down the fuel stack. At some point, the flame zone expands under a section of fuel and the pyrolysis become unstable, resulting in traditional combustion of the fuel to ash.

 

4) Tlud's make great stoves, due to relatively small scale and good heat transfer across the fuel bed. What is an acceptable temperature gradient across 150 mm become an unstable zone across 600 mm. At 2 meters, all stability is lost and the unit becomes a bonfire, not a controlled source of heat and biochar.

 

5) Significant instabilities in Tlud's are observed at 200l vessels, and forced convection tends to exacerbate the imbalance. Bigger is only worse.

 

6) What Tlud's do well they do brilliantly, beyond that, they are inferior to other designs.

 

I urge other to weigh in on the Tlud and it's calling.

 

Regards,

 

Hugh McLaughlin, PhD, PE

 

 


Re: What Wildlife and Conservation Groups Support Biochar? #conservation #wildlife #ngo

Frank Strie
 

Good links and points of contact Norm , Paul and Tom,
Have just quickly shared the link to the US based Sierra Club and question with various people under Down Under in Tasmania / Australia.
Thanks for the ongoing active & growing  global networking in all things PyCCS  Pyrogenic Carbon Capture & Sequestration.
Best regards from Tassie in full Spring now
Frank again

Inline image 1

Schwabenforest Pty. Ltd.
Karin & Frank Strie 
82 Brady’s Lookout Road
Rosevears, TAS, 7277
ph: 6394 4395
m: 61 (0) 417 312 927
Skype: Frank Strie terrapreta …

facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FranksCharTasmania
website: https://www.terrapretadevelopments.com.au/products


Member of the International Biochar Initiative
www.biochar-international.org

Associated with: the Biochar Journal & the Ithaka Institute
www.biochar-journal.org/en

 

The original home base of Australian Wilderness Adventures -
Trek Tours Australia
https://www.trektoursaustralia.com.au

https://www.trektasmania.com.au , Tarkine Trails

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Tom Miles
Sent: Sunday, September 13, 2020 3:10 PM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] What Wildlife and Conservation Groups Support Biochar?

 

Thanks Paul and Norm. We need to do some outreach

 

Tom

T R Miles Technical Consultants Inc.

Sent from mobile. 



On Sep 12, 2020, at 8:57 PM, Norm Baker <ntbakerphd@...> wrote:



Paul McCullough;

 

 

Norm


Re: What Wildlife and Conservation Groups Support Biochar? #conservation #wildlife #ngo

Tom Miles
 

Thanks Paul and Norm. We need to do some outreach

Tom

T R Miles Technical Consultants Inc.
tmiles@...
Sent from mobile. 

On Sep 12, 2020, at 8:57 PM, Norm Baker <ntbakerphd@...> wrote:


Paul McCullough;


Norm


Re: Restoring Abandoned Farmland to Mitigate Climate Change on a Full Earth: One Earth #restoration #climate

Kim Chaffee
 

Rick,
I believe that both PV solar and wind energy are both very cost competitive with fossil fuels now.  Whether one or the other is lower cost will likely depend on the particular location—average wind speed, number of sunny days per year.  
Kim


On Aug 27, 2020, at 4:18 PM, Rick Wilson via groups.io <rick012@...> wrote:

Tom, do you know if wind energy is lower cost than PV?  Rick


On Aug 27, 2020, at 1:18 AM, Tom Stephan <tom@...> wrote:

Bob,
Bio char is not in equal footing with wind farms. It is far more beneficial. I am a fifty plus year, veteran master falconer and former raptor propagator.Windmills kill hundreds of Golden Eagles per year. Just the Alta Mont Pass, Ca. facility alone kills on average 64 eagles per year.  They install the turbines directly in the raptor's migration paths for the same reason the raptors are there, for the wind. 
But that's not the worst of it. If you or I killed eagles or destroyed their habitat, the government would force us to mitigate. But Barry Sotollo, alias "Obama" passed a corporate criminal "Eagle act" (sounds so loving huh?) allowing wind energy to kill these birds and get off Scott free. It's a crime as they say.
Why dont we hear about in the news? Fake news. Research my claim yourself and you will see that I am correct. I have tried to innocently get the news companies to give this story some ink but to no avail. I was naive.The only person to mention that birds are dying due to these hawk blenders is president Trump. This may cause some controversy but we have bern soon fed a lie.

On Thu, Aug 27, 2020, 12:17 AM ROBERT W GILLETT <themarvalus.wabio@...> wrote:
Ron,

It is great to see these authors put biochar for soil on an equal footing with solar and wind power, which are much farther along in deployment. Solar panel manufacturing in Asia made a big difference in the economics of that industry here in the U.S. Booming biochar production in China may have a similar effect, but borne out of geopolitical rivalry since it doesn't work well as a global export. 

What I think they missed, in trying to show ways of supplying energy while restoring co-located vegetation, is the heat energy that might be used where the biochar is produced. That could be of some benefit if it is set forth as an objective in designing these arrangements.

Bob




Re: What Wildlife and Conservation Groups Support Biochar? #conservation #wildlife #ngo

Norm Baker
 

Paul McCullough;


Norm


Re: Preventing escaping gases #tlud #technology

Dick Gallien
 


Lowstuter, Derek <derek.lowstuter@...>

Nov 14, 2019, 12:51 PM
Reply
to me
Hi Dick,

We used the surplus oil tank because it was large enough to handle whole trees and was cheap (free in our case). They are also readily available, can be easily fabricated (cut), and moved with a standard payloader or large enough tractor. The edges were reinforced with square steel pipe, but I couldn't tell you the gauge. There were little stabilizing legs attached also, but these are likely unnecessary.   

I imagine the railroad tanks would be more than sufficient. Anything will warp if subjected to enough heating and cooling cycles, but so what if you are using a flame cap method to produce the char.
A biochar producer in CO (Biochar Now) uses the end of the rail tanks for their kilns, and has developed an attachment to handle them effectively. They are looking for partners to "franchise" if you have enough capital to invest in a system and will help connect you to the markets they have developed. Here is a good introduction to their work: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIUFWkc-tnI
It sounds like you have some funding and some infrastructure already developed, so I recommend looking into the Biochar Now system. Why reinvent the wheel? Their systems are also approved in very emission-conscious CO, so it will likely be easier to get such a system approved in MN.

I do not personally anyone doing biochar work in MN (outside academics like Kurt). I suggest contacting the MN Wood Innovation Team to start http://woodinnovation.umn.edu/

Good luck and please keep me posted on your efforts.
Best,
Derek

Derek Lowstuter, Forest Stewardship Manager
NDSU-NORTH DAKOTA FOREST SERVICE
 916 E Interstate Ave, Suite #4
Bismarck, ND 58503
Tel:  (701) 328-9990
Cell: (701) 537-3584
E-mail:  Derek.Lowstuter@...
www.ndsu.edu/ndfs





On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 9:23 PM Dick Gallien via groups.io <dickgallien=gmail.com@groups.io> wrote:
Hi Paul,
I hope that both of our plans work, that you sell many of your patented kilns and my flying turtle does well enough to make a dent in Winona's and other communities "waste wood".  Following your practical suggestion, I decided that a 10' dia. X 30' X 7/8", with both factory ends and a 6' wide, lengthwise piece removed, vs. the same sized tank being cut in half lengthwise.  After being rolled into its proper turtle position,  it should pyrolysize for weeks.  If the gases are flared, does anyone have suggestions for the heat? 

 I'm sorry not to be able to invest in your kiln, but I have nothing to invest in anything.   

I think Nando suggested burning brush in a trench and tipping a half tank over it---I'm innocent.  This is the pleasant note from Derek at Bismark, N.D., where Kelpie did workshops last year.  Odds are Derek's free tank is 10.5' dia X 16' X 1/4", that the grappled loader picked it up by the end.  I doubt the sq. tubing welded on the edges would last more than a couple rounds.  

It would be interesting to know what the start up cost is for the Colorado system.  Chipping dry, dead  spruce would be much easier on the chipper than live, green hardwood.logs.  Thanks, Dick .  




On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 4:50 PM Anderson, Paul <psanders@...> wrote:

Dick,

 

Dick, 

 

I have written why the “turtle top” (dome-side up) over a trench is sooooo unlikely to work.

 

You have just recently written about the vertical Railway tank on your farm.   I have attached a photo.   Big.   10 ft diameter.   You used it twice some years ago (as you have described) and are thinking of another attempt.     People can get char from a camp fire or a forest fire or a RR tank car.   But the system needs to be functional.   Large-diameter pyrolysis units have been lacking, and you have shown one that does not work.

 

I address now the concept of the “turtle” (dome-side down) as an open-top flame cap pyrolyzer which, at the end of the pyrolysis time (which for you is limited to 8 hours from 8 AM to 4 PM), would be flipped over to essentially seal / smother the contents.   I have spoken to you before about this, and I remain totally skeptical that such an arrangement would work well enough to be a standard practice.   We have never heard any more after Kelpie’s trial run(s?) with a large turtle demonstration (South Dakota??? a couple of years ago??)   Great demo.   But not successful enough to have encouraged substantial further development.

 

I hope that Kelpie Wilson or someone who was at that event  will join in this conversation.    Experience counts!!!   Why is the turtle concept not being promoted for similar char production?   Probably because it did not work well enough to merit much more effort.   And Dick wants to build one even larger, heavier, and where he faces serious restrictions on his hours of usage of such a device.   Not a wise move, in my opinion.   But Dick is about 89 yrs old and is my senior.   He can do what he wants to do, including flipping half of a RR tank car as needed on his property.

 

If pyrolysis is not complete before the flip, there is not any reasonable (or even unreasonable) way to prevent the emissions of much smoke.  

 

If pyrolysis is expected to be complete in the time allowed, you cannot have large diameter biomass entering the turtle flame-cap in the final 4 or more hours.  

 

I hope that Sue prevails and prevents doing the RR-car size turtle.  

 

HERE IS SOME BACKGROUND STORY FOR MY INVOLVEMENT WITH THE WINONA FARM:   I have been there twice, about 12 yrs ago and last September.

 

NOTE to all, and especially to Nando who today wrote: 

I've been looking for a low-cost, large scale pyrolysis method suitable for people like Dick and Sue. 

 

Me to, and I do have a possible solution.  I have a patent in the works for the solution.   Please see the 4 minute video at   www.woodgas.com/resources    and see the other files about Rotatable Covered Cavity  (RoCC) kiln..   But some of the details are still private / confidential because I do not want to make public disclosures before I am ready with supporting evidence.   But the concept is included in my patent (patent pending status for USA and internationally), so I am comfortable to disclose on a direct personal private basis to others.  (Anyone interested should contact me at my personal email address    psanders@...   and not via the Discussion Group.)

 

For Dick and Sue’s farm in Winona, Minnesota, I have a conceptual plan for a large-size RoCC kiln.   I was there at last Sept or October.   I have proposed a large RoCC kiln with a 10.5 ft diameter and 16 ft long donated tank in the Winona area.    But the expenses of the Winona RoCC kiln project (10 ft diameter) would have fallen to me to pay.   (Dick can talk about getting the RR tank car for his turtle, and his financing of it is not known to me and none of my business, but he never offered to put money into the RoCC kiln.)   So I am being more cautious.   I am incorporating the un-disclosed innovations of the 10 ft diameter unit into a unit with a 6 ft diameter.  Work has already begun.    I hope that it is “showable” by early October, complete with data from initial batches of biochar.    I am  confident that it will work, but better to build with a capable workshop and test the concepts at 6 ft diameter and be close to home instead  of with a 10+ ft diameter tank that is a 6-hour drive away.  

 

Best wishes to all, and stay safe!!

 

Paul

 

 

 

 

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: Dick Gallien <dickgallien@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 11:37 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Cc: Anderson, Paul <psanders@...>
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

Hi Paul, Sue doesn't like turtles, (she shouldn't have confused you into 18 tons) but I do (did I tell you about hatching 6K soft shelled turtle eggs, I dug on Ms. R. sandbars summer of '72) ?  She's convinced we'll lose our 8 to 4 burn permit, because of the fumes from a rr tank/turtle.  With all of your suggestions, we must flare or make use of those fumes, because only with a clutch of tank turtles, cooking nearly full time, do I see making a dent in the hundreds of trees Winona torches each year, thereby becoming Winona's Farm Compost Site, instead of another rich person's locked gate show off estate, while helping spread the good word about biochar.  .  .      

 

 

 

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 10:23 AM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Ray,

 

Your explanation is about the best way I have heard to get rid of large stumps.   You are essentially using them to creat a “thick walled” container that can be partially pyrolyzed with each batch event.

 

I hope all is well for you.   Glad to hear that you are still so active.

 

Paul

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Ray Menke via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 7:16 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

"The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames."

After making charcoal about 400 times in 55 gallon drums using wood from slash piles, I ended up with some whole tree trunks, and tree roots with embedded rocks, mud, nails, etc, that could not/would not be sawn with a chainsaw.  The solution was to push two large logs together using a front-end loader, but leaving a two foot space between them, and then loading this space as one would load a TLUD container, with thorny brush and vines at the top.  After lighting, let it burn for a while, then add more brush, bark, and other junk wood, just as you would do in a cone kiln.  This all burns very hot, with almost no smoke, and after a couple of hours most of the flames are gone, and a giant pile of glowing char remains (in the center).  Then, several hundred gallons of pond water can be used to extinguish the whole stack.  The next day, the loader separates the two logs, and they are scraped down with a heavy Swiss Hoe, Hatchet, or other scraping device.  The logs lose several inches of hardwood, and the char/charcoal can be raked into large piles.  The ash (not very much) and fines run out into the pasture where the grass grows much greener and is eaten first by cows and calves.  (They really like it.)

After more thorny brush accumulates, and more semi-rotted tree trunks are discovered, the whole process is repeated with the two (smaller) original logs or especially tree roots.

I have experimented with old tin roofing or other scrap steel as a "container" for the two tree trunks, but it didn't seem worth the effort.  A loader of clay works well.

After it is all over, there is a big pile of charcoal, no white ash, and removal of large piles of fine thorny brush.  (Mesquite and Huisache)  No smoke, either.  Often, there are quite a few brands that will fit into my wood stove, and these are set aside to be added to the wood pile when there is no chance of them re-igniting.

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 5:36 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Hello Paul,

 

Thanks for your review of the idea. I would fully agree that varying char qualities would be produced, but since Dick's use is as a soil amendment, that would be perfectly acceptable, particularly in light of the low capital investment involved.

closed, allowing exothermically driven pyrolysis to complete the process.

 

 other way to allow the batch to revert to a bonfire, and then closed again when the flames had begun to die down to embers.

 

The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames.

 

 

 

In this country, where most urban organic materials are officially labeled: "wood waste", "food waste", "yard waste" and "human waste", to be burned, buried, flushed or landfilled, is blindly accepted by most.  Only fools would be so determined, while finding fun/excitement in trying to turn "wood waste", which is being very efficiently disposed of across this country with matches and lighters into biochar, which can benefit healthy soil and the life that depends on it for hundreds to thousands of years.

 

The price/maintenance of whole tree chippers is out of sight for most..  Logs not good for lumber or firewood (I've heated only with wood for 54 yrs)  can be split,  but until processes are ironed

 

I mentioned to Hugh a few yrs. ago about the trench into a clay bank, 24' W 12'D X60', with brush stacked 10' above the upper ground level, lit on top and when burned down, I spread two 1500 ga. tanks of creek water on it and Sue ran 4 hose sprinklers continuously for 11 days, with a steady stream of clear water running out the lower end.  Hugh said that water would've had a slight lemon taste.  Sue, who has always said "It worked !!", after I dozed it shut, just said the only time there was the acrid smell was when I turned the hose off (which is an interesting thought) in that when the DNR game warden visited in June about a pyrolysis complaint and we can have no smoke or fumes other than between 8 and 4. Might 2 or 3 fine spraying nozzles over the 10' dia X 30' tank top hold the authorities off, while we consult with all of you?  

 

My goal is to mix the biochar in compost and spread it on the farm fields.  If any microbes complain about their residence I'll suggest they visit the majority of Mid West farm fields, that are dead/over dosed on chem's and headed for the Gulf.  The 11' wide dozer blade would  easily make a trench of that width.  When the brush was burned down and I've done that with wet compost, dozed dirt or compost over the burn without the tracks touching the pyrolysizing covered pile.  The pyrolysis fumes will continue, so we could test light hosing; however, wouldn't the toxicity of the pyrolysis gases be trapped in the covering of dirt or compost ?.

 

Eliminating smoke and fumes after 4pm is essential--because I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept..  We have a 1500 gallon liquid manure tank and a nearby trout stream, but a flooded trench would be an impossible mud hole.  The bricks this house was built from came from an adjoining brickyard.  

 

I don't remember in photos of large kilns built into slopes in S.A., with condensate being collected from chimney pipes on the above slope, whether they bothered to burn off the fumes.   

Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.  Dick

   

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 8:29 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Susan, 

 

You might consider sorting the feedstock by size (cross-sectional thickness). Batch similar sizes together. It's like baking cookies. Bake all the same size together to ensure they are all baked to the same degree during a fixed amount of time they share together in the oven. If you bake bread and cookies together for the same amount of time, either the cookies will be burned or the bread underbaked. 

 

When you sort feedstock like this for a batch kiln, it ensures that the processing time is sufficient to transform it to char, while not excessively "baking" the smaller bits into gases. The large rounds might take a few days, the smaller branches a few hours. If the small branches are combined with the large rounds, they will be converted mostly to gases and ash. 


Kind regards,

 

Nando

 

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 12:49 AM Susan <suemegg@...> wrote:

Nando,

 

Thank you fir your reply.

 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of our feedstock size is very variable.  We operate a compost site, and loads come in via car trunk loads, pickup trucks and full size dump trucks.  So we have from small bundles of twigs up to tree trunks.

 

 

 

 

 



--

Ray  Menke


Re: Preventing escaping gases #tlud #technology

Dick Gallien
 

Hi Paul,
I hope that both of our plans work, that you sell many of your patented kilns and my flying turtle does well enough to make a dent in Winona's and other communities "waste wood".  Following your practical suggestion, I decided that a 10' dia. X 30' X 7/8", with both factory ends and a 6' wide, lengthwise piece removed, vs. the same sized tank being cut in half lengthwise.  After being rolled into its proper turtle position,  it should pyrolysize for weeks.  If the gases are flared, does anyone have suggestions for the heat? 

 I'm sorry not to be able to invest in your kiln, but I have nothing to invest in anything.   

I think Nando suggested burning brush in a trench and tipping a half tank over it---I'm innocent.  This is the pleasant note from Derek at Bismark, N.D., where Kelpie did workshops last year.  Odds are Derek's free tank is 10.5' dia X 16' X 1/4", that the grappled loader picked it up by the end.  I doubt the sq. tubing welded on the edges would last more than a couple rounds.  

It would be interesting to know what the start up cost is for the Colorado system.  Chipping dry, dead  spruce would be much easier on the chipper than live, green hardwood.logs.  Thanks, Dick .  




On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 4:50 PM Anderson, Paul <psanders@...> wrote:

Dick,

 

Dick, 

 

I have written why the “turtle top” (dome-side up) over a trench is sooooo unlikely to work.

 

You have just recently written about the vertical Railway tank on your farm.   I have attached a photo.   Big.   10 ft diameter.   You used it twice some years ago (as you have described) and are thinking of another attempt.     People can get char from a camp fire or a forest fire or a RR tank car.   But the system needs to be functional.   Large-diameter pyrolysis units have been lacking, and you have shown one that does not work.

 

I address now the concept of the “turtle” (dome-side down) as an open-top flame cap pyrolyzer which, at the end of the pyrolysis time (which for you is limited to 8 hours from 8 AM to 4 PM), would be flipped over to essentially seal / smother the contents.   I have spoken to you before about this, and I remain totally skeptical that such an arrangement would work well enough to be a standard practice.   We have never heard any more after Kelpie’s trial run(s?) with a large turtle demonstration (South Dakota??? a couple of years ago??)   Great demo.   But not successful enough to have encouraged substantial further development.

 

I hope that Kelpie Wilson or someone who was at that event  will join in this conversation.    Experience counts!!!   Why is the turtle concept not being promoted for similar char production?   Probably because it did not work well enough to merit much more effort.   And Dick wants to build one even larger, heavier, and where he faces serious restrictions on his hours of usage of such a device.   Not a wise move, in my opinion.   But Dick is about 89 yrs old and is my senior.   He can do what he wants to do, including flipping half of a RR tank car as needed on his property.

 

If pyrolysis is not complete before the flip, there is not any reasonable (or even unreasonable) way to prevent the emissions of much smoke.  

 

If pyrolysis is expected to be complete in the time allowed, you cannot have large diameter biomass entering the turtle flame-cap in the final 4 or more hours.  

 

I hope that Sue prevails and prevents doing the RR-car size turtle.  

 

HERE IS SOME BACKGROUND STORY FOR MY INVOLVEMENT WITH THE WINONA FARM:   I have been there twice, about 12 yrs ago and last September.

 

NOTE to all, and especially to Nando who today wrote: 

I've been looking for a low-cost, large scale pyrolysis method suitable for people like Dick and Sue. 

 

Me to, and I do have a possible solution.  I have a patent in the works for the solution.   Please see the 4 minute video at   www.woodgas.com/resources    and see the other files about Rotatable Covered Cavity  (RoCC) kiln..   But some of the details are still private / confidential because I do not want to make public disclosures before I am ready with supporting evidence.   But the concept is included in my patent (patent pending status for USA and internationally), so I am comfortable to disclose on a direct personal private basis to others.  (Anyone interested should contact me at my personal email address    psanders@...   and not via the Discussion Group.)

 

For Dick and Sue’s farm in Winona, Minnesota, I have a conceptual plan for a large-size RoCC kiln.   I was there at last Sept or October.   I have proposed a large RoCC kiln with a 10.5 ft diameter and 16 ft long donated tank in the Winona area.    But the expenses of the Winona RoCC kiln project (10 ft diameter) would have fallen to me to pay.   (Dick can talk about getting the RR tank car for his turtle, and his financing of it is not known to me and none of my business, but he never offered to put money into the RoCC kiln.)   So I am being more cautious.   I am incorporating the un-disclosed innovations of the 10 ft diameter unit into a unit with a 6 ft diameter.  Work has already begun.    I hope that it is “showable” by early October, complete with data from initial batches of biochar.    I am  confident that it will work, but better to build with a capable workshop and test the concepts at 6 ft diameter and be close to home instead  of with a 10+ ft diameter tank that is a 6-hour drive away.  

 

Best wishes to all, and stay safe!!

 

Paul

 

 

 

 

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: Dick Gallien <dickgallien@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 11:37 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Cc: Anderson, Paul <psanders@...>
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

Hi Paul, Sue doesn't like turtles, (she shouldn't have confused you into 18 tons) but I do (did I tell you about hatching 6K soft shelled turtle eggs, I dug on Ms. R. sandbars summer of '72) ?  She's convinced we'll lose our 8 to 4 burn permit, because of the fumes from a rr tank/turtle.  With all of your suggestions, we must flare or make use of those fumes, because only with a clutch of tank turtles, cooking nearly full time, do I see making a dent in the hundreds of trees Winona torches each year, thereby becoming Winona's Farm Compost Site, instead of another rich person's locked gate show off estate, while helping spread the good word about biochar.  .  .      

 

 

 

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 10:23 AM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Ray,

 

Your explanation is about the best way I have heard to get rid of large stumps.   You are essentially using them to creat a “thick walled” container that can be partially pyrolyzed with each batch event.

 

I hope all is well for you.   Glad to hear that you are still so active.

 

Paul

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Ray Menke via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 7:16 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

"The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames."

After making charcoal about 400 times in 55 gallon drums using wood from slash piles, I ended up with some whole tree trunks, and tree roots with embedded rocks, mud, nails, etc, that could not/would not be sawn with a chainsaw.  The solution was to push two large logs together using a front-end loader, but leaving a two foot space between them, and then loading this space as one would load a TLUD container, with thorny brush and vines at the top.  After lighting, let it burn for a while, then add more brush, bark, and other junk wood, just as you would do in a cone kiln.  This all burns very hot, with almost no smoke, and after a couple of hours most of the flames are gone, and a giant pile of glowing char remains (in the center).  Then, several hundred gallons of pond water can be used to extinguish the whole stack.  The next day, the loader separates the two logs, and they are scraped down with a heavy Swiss Hoe, Hatchet, or other scraping device.  The logs lose several inches of hardwood, and the char/charcoal can be raked into large piles.  The ash (not very much) and fines run out into the pasture where the grass grows much greener and is eaten first by cows and calves.  (They really like it.)

After more thorny brush accumulates, and more semi-rotted tree trunks are discovered, the whole process is repeated with the two (smaller) original logs or especially tree roots.

I have experimented with old tin roofing or other scrap steel as a "container" for the two tree trunks, but it didn't seem worth the effort.  A loader of clay works well.

After it is all over, there is a big pile of charcoal, no white ash, and removal of large piles of fine thorny brush.  (Mesquite and Huisache)  No smoke, either.  Often, there are quite a few brands that will fit into my wood stove, and these are set aside to be added to the wood pile when there is no chance of them re-igniting.

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 5:36 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Hello Paul,

 

Thanks for your review of the idea. I would fully agree that varying char qualities would be produced, but since Dick's use is as a soil amendment, that would be perfectly acceptable, particularly in light of the low capital investment involved.

closed, allowing exothermically driven pyrolysis to complete the process.

 

 other way to allow the batch to revert to a bonfire, and then closed again when the flames had begun to die down to embers.

 

The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames.

 

 

 

In this country, where most urban organic materials are officially labeled: "wood waste", "food waste", "yard waste" and "human waste", to be burned, buried, flushed or landfilled, is blindly accepted by most.  Only fools would be so determined, while finding fun/excitement in trying to turn "wood waste", which is being very efficiently disposed of across this country with matches and lighters into biochar, which can benefit healthy soil and the life that depends on it for hundreds to thousands of years.

 

The price/maintenance of whole tree chippers is out of sight for most..  Logs not good for lumber or firewood (I've heated only with wood for 54 yrs)  can be split,  but until processes are ironed

 

I mentioned to Hugh a few yrs. ago about the trench into a clay bank, 24' W 12'D X60', with brush stacked 10' above the upper ground level, lit on top and when burned down, I spread two 1500 ga. tanks of creek water on it and Sue ran 4 hose sprinklers continuously for 11 days, with a steady stream of clear water running out the lower end.  Hugh said that water would've had a slight lemon taste.  Sue, who has always said "It worked !!", after I dozed it shut, just said the only time there was the acrid smell was when I turned the hose off (which is an interesting thought) in that when the DNR game warden visited in June about a pyrolysis complaint and we can have no smoke or fumes other than between 8 and 4. Might 2 or 3 fine spraying nozzles over the 10' dia X 30' tank top hold the authorities off, while we consult with all of you?  

 

My goal is to mix the biochar in compost and spread it on the farm fields.  If any microbes complain about their residence I'll suggest they visit the majority of Mid West farm fields, that are dead/over dosed on chem's and headed for the Gulf.  The 11' wide dozer blade would  easily make a trench of that width.  When the brush was burned down and I've done that with wet compost, dozed dirt or compost over the burn without the tracks touching the pyrolysizing covered pile.  The pyrolysis fumes will continue, so we could test light hosing; however, wouldn't the toxicity of the pyrolysis gases be trapped in the covering of dirt or compost ?.

 

Eliminating smoke and fumes after 4pm is essential--because I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept..  We have a 1500 gallon liquid manure tank and a nearby trout stream, but a flooded trench would be an impossible mud hole.  The bricks this house was built from came from an adjoining brickyard.  

 

I don't remember in photos of large kilns built into slopes in S.A., with condensate being collected from chimney pipes on the above slope, whether they bothered to burn off the fumes.   

Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.  Dick

   

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 8:29 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Susan, 

 

You might consider sorting the feedstock by size (cross-sectional thickness). Batch similar sizes together. It's like baking cookies. Bake all the same size together to ensure they are all baked to the same degree during a fixed amount of time they share together in the oven. If you bake bread and cookies together for the same amount of time, either the cookies will be burned or the bread underbaked. 

 

When you sort feedstock like this for a batch kiln, it ensures that the processing time is sufficient to transform it to char, while not excessively "baking" the smaller bits into gases. The large rounds might take a few days, the smaller branches a few hours. If the small branches are combined with the large rounds, they will be converted mostly to gases and ash. 


Kind regards,

 

Nando

 

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 12:49 AM Susan <suemegg@...> wrote:

Nando,

 

Thank you fir your reply.

 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of our feedstock size is very variable.  We operate a compost site, and loads come in via car trunk loads, pickup trucks and full size dump trucks.  So we have from small bundles of twigs up to tree trunks.

 

 

 

 

 



--

Ray  Menke


Fundamental facts about TLUDs #technology #tlud

Hugh McLaughlin
 

Dear list,

The basics of Tlud's are well established, if not well organized. Let me share a few of my hunches, developed over the years:

1) Tlud's are not chaotic. This means they follow the same path if started from the same starting point. This may seem obvious, but it is in fact a wonderful quality. It allows study and prediction of behavior. Lacking this, few studies will get far at predicting the future.

2) Tlud's scale linearly, but become less stable as the many amplified variables become less deterministic. This is essentially academic gibberish, but it means that the scaled predictions  are linear, but the results become less stable due to additional effects taking over.

3) For example, Tlud's become less stable the bigger they are - in that the linear progression of the pyrolytic front in the z-axis become less stable in the x-y axis, leading to unstable (uneven) progression of the hot zone down the fuel stack. At some point, the flame zone expands under a section of fuel and the pyrolysis become unstable, resulting in traditional combustion of the fuel to ash.

4) Tlud's make great stoves, due to relatively small scale and good heat transfer across the fuel bed. What is an acceptable temperature gradient across 150 mm become an unstable zone across 600 mm. At 2 meters, all stability is lost and the unit becomes a bonfire, not a controlled source of heat and biochar.

5) Significant instabilities in Tlud's are observed at 200l vessels, and forced convection tends to exacerbate the imbalance. Bigger is only worse.

6) What Tlud's do well they do brilliantly, beyond that, they are inferior to other designs.

I urge other to weigh in on the Tlud and it's calling.

Regards,

Hugh McLaughlin, PhD, PE



Re: [EXTERN] [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

Tom Miles
 

Benoit,

 

There is a little more activity than you have characterized but it is spread over broader areas. France has had a strong tradition in carbonization, charcoal, pyrolysis, torrefaction and the use of charcoal for industrial purposes. I have personally worked with French researchers and technology providers on pyrolysis and gasification since the 1980s.

 

IBI has members and subscribers who are active with biochar in France and French speaking countries in North Africa, SubSaharan Africa and in Brazil. Companies using biochar include a few composting and soil amendment companies. Most French research seem to be collaborative efforts in EU projects. We have heard that there has been historic opposition to biochar within INRA. The opposition may explain the limited activity by IRSTEA (formerly CEMAGREF) except for co-composting. We don’t know if that has changed with the merger of INRA and IRSTEA to INRAE.

 

INRAE is France's new National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment, created on January 1, 2020, It was formed by the merger of INRA, the National Institute for Agricultural Research, and IRSTEA, the National Research Institute of Science and Technology for the Environment and Agriculture.”

 

There is some activity from ADEME but in the context of co-products of pyrolysis and gasification. Agence de l'Environnement et de la Maîtrise de l'Énergie (ADEME).

 

Technology providers ETIA/VT Green, now Scanship, (represented by Norris Thermal in the US) and some producers like Florentaise and SLB Groupe in France have been strong supporters of biochar.    

 

Tom

 

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Benoit Lambert
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 2:00 PM
To: main@Biochar.groups.io
Cc: claudia.kammann@...; Stephen Joseph <joey.stephen@...>; Trevor Richards <trevor@...>
Subject: Re: [EXTERN] [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

 

Ron and all,

Just so you know… Biochar is very little known in France, with the notable exception of Pro-Natura International and Guy Reinaud in Paris that does a very enthusiast promotion of biochar in French speaking developing countries, in particular Sénégal. Radio-France International even did a program about biochar use in that country. Biochar was launched through terra preta researches at Cornell University. France has no tradition of research in the field that I am aware of. Claude and Lydia Bourguignon, a very popular couple that fills-up auditoriums on the topic of soil degradation and soils’ health, mention biochar to say it is hypothetical at best. Paul Luu and former minister of agriculture Stéphane Le Foll that founded the 4p1000, seem to know little about biochar, we have an education challenge ahead (here my blog in 2016 on Le Foll and his 4p1000). Paul’s surprise to hear so much about biochar during the North American 4p1000 meeting (I followed the entire thing, 5 days) illustrates the absence of knowledge on biochar in France. In Europe it is lead by Germany, Sweden and Italy where there has been numerous meetings on biochar. Of course the European Union has a COST program on biochar. There is no book on biochar in French. Yet I should mention the city of Lausanne, French speaking, has financed a machine producing biochar for Swiss Biochar years ago. 

Kind regards, 

Benoit in Québec

 

Le 12 sept. 2020 à 15:06, Ron Larson via groups.io <rongretlarson@...> a écrit :

 

Claudia, Stephen, Trevor and list

 

Thanks for the alert.  I decided to apply.  Everyone might be limited to two of 24 groups.   Signing up took about 20 minutes.   No guarantee of acceptance.

 

I listened last May to a 5-day North-American (more Canadian than US) 4p1000 webinar-type meeting.  Last week the meeting summary was sent out - see; https://www.4p1000.org/sites/default/files/english/report_1st_meeting_4p1000_narm_03_sept_2020_-_english_1.pdf.    

The word ‘biochar” appears 33 times - I think all related to comments - not presentations.

The last line of that report’s summary of the first day  was by Paul Luu - the director of 4p1000, who said about biochar (p42) “  "It is important to evaluate it quickly. Farmers are very enthusiastic; scientists are more reluctant." P. Luu.

This surprises me a little - because most scientists I read (especially soil scientists) are “very enthusiastic’.  As Luu moderated over the 5 days, I thought he was surprised about the many biochar comments - and was always very fair in dealing with biochar commenters.

4p1000 may sound like a small goal.  It is not.  This group could be a big help to promoting biochar.

 

Ron

 

 

 

On Sep 12, 2020, at 3:47 AM, Claudia Kammann <claudia.kammann@...> wrote:

 

Hi Joey, Hi all,

 

in a way, I found my way there, too, because I got nominated the representative of Hochschule Geisenheim University for 4per1000 – our institution joined the 4per1000 initiative early on when it was not well known yet.

 

Our president is quite dedicated to all measures combatting climate change and is aware of the utter importance of soils in this regard J, but since he has so much on his plate I volunteered.

 

And as you well know, with me rides the biochar topic... can’t have one without the other. So, here you go ;)

 

chars to all,

Claudia

 

Von: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> Im Auftrag von Stephen Joseph
Gesendet: Samstag, 12. September 2020 07:24
An: main@Biochar.groups.io
Betreff: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

 

sounds like a good one for Kathleen to be on as she is the chair of IBI

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 3:02 PM Trevor Richards <trevor@...> wrote:

I've received an email from 4p1000...

"Invitation to Task Forces of the 4 per 1000 Initiative on soils for food security and climate"
https://wiki.afris.org/display/4Action

I'm wondering if there should be a coordinated effort by international biochar community to participate & advocate for biochar.

 

 

Dr. Benoit Lambert

Founder and President / Fondateur et président
Cbiochar Enr. 
BioGéoThérapiste, auteur/blog 
https://cologie.wordpress.com 

Membre: Stratégie énergétique, biosphère et société, Genève
Reviewer/réviseur IPCC/GIEC, Working Group I (WGI), Sixth Assessment Report (AR6), in particular Chap. 5 Carbon dioxide removal methods/biochar.
Tel: 450 775 7444
benoit.lambert7@... // benoit.lambert@... 

 

 

 

 


Re: Preventing escaping gases #tlud #technology

Paul S Anderson
 

Dick,

 

Dick, 

 

I have written why the “turtle top” (dome-side up) over a trench is sooooo unlikely to work.

 

You have just recently written about the vertical Railway tank on your farm.   I have attached a photo.   Big.   10 ft diameter.   You used it twice some years ago (as you have described) and are thinking of another attempt.     People can get char from a camp fire or a forest fire or a RR tank car.   But the system needs to be functional.   Large-diameter pyrolysis units have been lacking, and you have shown one that does not work.

 

I address now the concept of the “turtle” (dome-side down) as an open-top flame cap pyrolyzer which, at the end of the pyrolysis time (which for you is limited to 8 hours from 8 AM to 4 PM), would be flipped over to essentially seal / smother the contents.   I have spoken to you before about this, and I remain totally skeptical that such an arrangement would work well enough to be a standard practice.   We have never heard any more after Kelpie’s trial run(s?) with a large turtle demonstration (South Dakota??? a couple of years ago??)   Great demo.   But not successful enough to have encouraged substantial further development.

 

I hope that Kelpie Wilson or someone who was at that event  will join in this conversation.    Experience counts!!!   Why is the turtle concept not being promoted for similar char production?   Probably because it did not work well enough to merit much more effort.   And Dick wants to build one even larger, heavier, and where he faces serious restrictions on his hours of usage of such a device.   Not a wise move, in my opinion.   But Dick is about 89 yrs old and is my senior.   He can do what he wants to do, including flipping half of a RR tank car as needed on his property.

 

If pyrolysis is not complete before the flip, there is not any reasonable (or even unreasonable) way to prevent the emissions of much smoke.  

 

If pyrolysis is expected to be complete in the time allowed, you cannot have large diameter biomass entering the turtle flame-cap in the final 4 or more hours.  

 

I hope that Sue prevails and prevents doing the RR-car size turtle.  

 

HERE IS SOME BACKGROUND STORY FOR MY INVOLVEMENT WITH THE WINONA FARM:   I have been there twice, about 12 yrs ago and last September.

 

NOTE to all, and especially to Nando who today wrote: 

I've been looking for a low-cost, large scale pyrolysis method suitable for people like Dick and Sue. 

 

Me to, and I do have a possible solution.  I have a patent in the works for the solution.   Please see the 4 minute video at   www.woodgas.com/resources    and see the other files about Rotatable Covered Cavity  (RoCC) kiln..   But some of the details are still private / confidential because I do not want to make public disclosures before I am ready with supporting evidence.   But the concept is included in my patent (patent pending status for USA and internationally), so I am comfortable to disclose on a direct personal private basis to others.  (Anyone interested should contact me at my personal email address    psanders@...   and not via the Discussion Group.)

 

For Dick and Sue’s farm in Winona, Minnesota, I have a conceptual plan for a large-size RoCC kiln.   I was there at last Sept or October.   I have proposed a large RoCC kiln with a 10.5 ft diameter and 16 ft long donated tank in the Winona area.    But the expenses of the Winona RoCC kiln project (10 ft diameter) would have fallen to me to pay.   (Dick can talk about getting the RR tank car for his turtle, and his financing of it is not known to me and none of my business, but he never offered to put money into the RoCC kiln.)   So I am being more cautious.   I am incorporating the un-disclosed innovations of the 10 ft diameter unit into a unit with a 6 ft diameter.  Work has already begun.    I hope that it is “showable” by early October, complete with data from initial batches of biochar.    I am  confident that it will work, but better to build with a capable workshop and test the concepts at 6 ft diameter and be close to home instead  of with a 10+ ft diameter tank that is a 6-hour drive away.  

 

Best wishes to all, and stay safe!!

 

Paul

 

 

 

 

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: Dick Gallien <dickgallien@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 11:37 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Cc: Anderson, Paul <psanders@...>
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

Hi Paul, Sue doesn't like turtles, (she shouldn't have confused you into 18 tons) but I do (did I tell you about hatching 6K soft shelled turtle eggs, I dug on Ms. R. sandbars summer of '72) ?  She's convinced we'll lose our 8 to 4 burn permit, because of the fumes from a rr tank/turtle.  With all of your suggestions, we must flare or make use of those fumes, because only with a clutch of tank turtles, cooking nearly full time, do I see making a dent in the hundreds of trees Winona torches each year, thereby becoming Winona's Farm Compost Site, instead of another rich person's locked gate show off estate, while helping spread the good word about biochar.  .  .      

 

 

 

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 10:23 AM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Ray,

 

Your explanation is about the best way I have heard to get rid of large stumps.   You are essentially using them to creat a “thick walled” container that can be partially pyrolyzed with each batch event.

 

I hope all is well for you.   Glad to hear that you are still so active.

 

Paul

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Ray Menke via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 7:16 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

"The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames."

After making charcoal about 400 times in 55 gallon drums using wood from slash piles, I ended up with some whole tree trunks, and tree roots with embedded rocks, mud, nails, etc, that could not/would not be sawn with a chainsaw.  The solution was to push two large logs together using a front-end loader, but leaving a two foot space between them, and then loading this space as one would load a TLUD container, with thorny brush and vines at the top.  After lighting, let it burn for a while, then add more brush, bark, and other junk wood, just as you would do in a cone kiln.  This all burns very hot, with almost no smoke, and after a couple of hours most of the flames are gone, and a giant pile of glowing char remains (in the center).  Then, several hundred gallons of pond water can be used to extinguish the whole stack.  The next day, the loader separates the two logs, and they are scraped down with a heavy Swiss Hoe, Hatchet, or other scraping device.  The logs lose several inches of hardwood, and the char/charcoal can be raked into large piles.  The ash (not very much) and fines run out into the pasture where the grass grows much greener and is eaten first by cows and calves.  (They really like it.)

After more thorny brush accumulates, and more semi-rotted tree trunks are discovered, the whole process is repeated with the two (smaller) original logs or especially tree roots.

I have experimented with old tin roofing or other scrap steel as a "container" for the two tree trunks, but it didn't seem worth the effort.  A loader of clay works well.

After it is all over, there is a big pile of charcoal, no white ash, and removal of large piles of fine thorny brush.  (Mesquite and Huisache)  No smoke, either.  Often, there are quite a few brands that will fit into my wood stove, and these are set aside to be added to the wood pile when there is no chance of them re-igniting.

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 5:36 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Hello Paul,

 

Thanks for your review of the idea. I would fully agree that varying char qualities would be produced, but since Dick's use is as a soil amendment, that would be perfectly acceptable, particularly in light of the low capital investment involved.

closed, allowing exothermically driven pyrolysis to complete the process.

 

 other way to allow the batch to revert to a bonfire, and then closed again when the flames had begun to die down to embers.

 

The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames.

 

 

 

In this country, where most urban organic materials are officially labeled: "wood waste", "food waste", "yard waste" and "human waste", to be burned, buried, flushed or landfilled, is blindly accepted by most.  Only fools would be so determined, while finding fun/excitement in trying to turn "wood waste", which is being very efficiently disposed of across this country with matches and lighters into biochar, which can benefit healthy soil and the life that depends on it for hundreds to thousands of years.

 

The price/maintenance of whole tree chippers is out of sight for most..  Logs not good for lumber or firewood (I've heated only with wood for 54 yrs)  can be split,  but until processes are ironed

 

I mentioned to Hugh a few yrs. ago about the trench into a clay bank, 24' W 12'D X60', with brush stacked 10' above the upper ground level, lit on top and when burned down, I spread two 1500 ga. tanks of creek water on it and Sue ran 4 hose sprinklers continuously for 11 days, with a steady stream of clear water running out the lower end.  Hugh said that water would've had a slight lemon taste.  Sue, who has always said "It worked !!", after I dozed it shut, just said the only time there was the acrid smell was when I turned the hose off (which is an interesting thought) in that when the DNR game warden visited in June about a pyrolysis complaint and we can have no smoke or fumes other than between 8 and 4. Might 2 or 3 fine spraying nozzles over the 10' dia X 30' tank top hold the authorities off, while we consult with all of you?  

 

My goal is to mix the biochar in compost and spread it on the farm fields.  If any microbes complain about their residence I'll suggest they visit the majority of Mid West farm fields, that are dead/over dosed on chem's and headed for the Gulf.  The 11' wide dozer blade would  easily make a trench of that width.  When the brush was burned down and I've done that with wet compost, dozed dirt or compost over the burn without the tracks touching the pyrolysizing covered pile.  The pyrolysis fumes will continue, so we could test light hosing; however, wouldn't the toxicity of the pyrolysis gases be trapped in the covering of dirt or compost ?.

 

Eliminating smoke and fumes after 4pm is essential--because I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept..  We have a 1500 gallon liquid manure tank and a nearby trout stream, but a flooded trench would be an impossible mud hole.  The bricks this house was built from came from an adjoining brickyard.  

 

I don't remember in photos of large kilns built into slopes in S.A., with condensate being collected from chimney pipes on the above slope, whether they bothered to burn off the fumes.   

Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.  Dick

   

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 8:29 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Susan, 

 

You might consider sorting the feedstock by size (cross-sectional thickness). Batch similar sizes together. It's like baking cookies. Bake all the same size together to ensure they are all baked to the same degree during a fixed amount of time they share together in the oven. If you bake bread and cookies together for the same amount of time, either the cookies will be burned or the bread underbaked. 

 

When you sort feedstock like this for a batch kiln, it ensures that the processing time is sufficient to transform it to char, while not excessively "baking" the smaller bits into gases. The large rounds might take a few days, the smaller branches a few hours. If the small branches are combined with the large rounds, they will be converted mostly to gases and ash. 


Kind regards,

 

Nando

 

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 12:49 AM Susan <suemegg@...> wrote:

Nando,

 

Thank you fir your reply.

 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of our feedstock size is very variable.  We operate a compost site, and loads come in via car trunk loads, pickup trucks and full size dump trucks.  So we have from small bundles of twigs up to tree trunks.

 

 

 

 

 



--

Ray  Menke


Re: [EXTERN] [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

Benoit Lambert
 

Ron and all,
Just so you know… Biochar is very little known in France, with the notable exception of Pro-Natura International and Guy Reinaud in Paris that does a very enthusiast promotion of biochar in French speaking developing countries, in particular Sénégal. Radio-France International even did a program about biochar use in that country. Biochar was launched through terra preta researches at Cornell University. France has no tradition of research in the field that I am aware of. Claude and Lydia Bourguignon, a very popular couple that fills-up auditoriums on the topic of soil degradation and soils’ health, mention biochar to say it is hypothetical at best. Paul Luu and former minister of agriculture Stéphane Le Foll that founded the 4p1000, seem to know little about biochar, we have an education challenge ahead (here my blog in 2016 on Le Foll and his 4p1000). Paul’s surprise to hear so much about biochar during the North American 4p1000 meeting (I followed the entire thing, 5 days) illustrates the absence of knowledge on biochar in France. In Europe it is lead by Germany, Sweden and Italy where there has been numerous meetings on biochar. Of course the European Union has a COST program on biochar. There is no book on biochar in French. Yet I should mention the city of Lausanne, French speaking, has financed a machine producing biochar for Swiss Biochar years ago. 
Kind regards, 
Benoit in Québec

Le 12 sept. 2020 à 15:06, Ron Larson via groups.io <rongretlarson@...> a écrit :

Claudia, Stephen, Trevor and list

Thanks for the alert.  I decided to apply.  Everyone might be limited to two of 24 groups.   Signing up took about 20 minutes.   No guarantee of acceptance.

I listened last May to a 5-day North-American (more Canadian than US) 4p1000 webinar-type meeting.  Last week the meeting summary was sent out - see; https://www.4p1000.org/sites/default/files/english/report_1st_meeting_4p1000_narm_03_sept_2020_-_english_1.pdf.    
The word ‘biochar” appears 33 times - I think all related to comments - not presentations.
The last line of that report’s summary of the first day  was by Paul Luu - the director of 4p1000, who said about biochar (p42) “  "It is important to evaluate it quickly. Farmers are very enthusiastic; scientists are more reluctant." P. Luu.
This surprises me a little - because most scientists I read (especially soil scientists) are “very enthusiastic’.  As Luu moderated over the 5 days, I thought he was surprised about the many biochar comments - and was always very fair in dealing with biochar commenters.
4p1000 may sound like a small goal.  It is not.  This group could be a big help to promoting biochar.

Ron



On Sep 12, 2020, at 3:47 AM, Claudia Kammann <claudia.kammann@...> wrote:

Hi Joey, Hi all,
 
in a way, I found my way there, too, because I got nominated the representative of Hochschule Geisenheim University for 4per1000 – our institution joined the 4per1000 initiative early on when it was not well known yet.
 
Our president is quite dedicated to all measures combatting climate change and is aware of the utter importance of soils in this regard J, but since he has so much on his plate I volunteered.
 
And as you well know, with me rides the biochar topic... can’t have one without the other. So, here you go ;)
 
chars to all,
Claudia
 
Von: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> Im Auftrag von Stephen Joseph
Gesendet: Samstag, 12. September 2020 07:24
An: main@Biochar.groups.io
Betreff: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000
 
sounds like a good one for Kathleen to be on as she is the chair of IBI
 
On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 3:02 PM Trevor Richards <trevor@...> wrote:
I've received an email from 4p1000...

"Invitation to Task Forces of the 4 per 1000 Initiative on soils for food security and climate"
https://wiki.afris.org/display/4Action

I'm wondering if there should be a coordinated effort by international biochar community to participate & advocate for biochar.



Dr. Benoit Lambert
Founder and President / Fondateur et président
Cbiochar Enr. 
BioGéoThérapiste, auteur/blog https://cologie.wordpress.com 
Membre: Stratégie énergétique, biosphère et société, Genève
Reviewer/réviseur IPCC/GIEC, Working Group I (WGI), Sixth Assessment Report (AR6), in particular Chap. 5 Carbon dioxide removal methods/biochar.
Tel: 450 775 7444
benoit.lambert7@... // benoit.lambert@... 






Re: Burning rather than preventing pyrolysis gases (Dick Gallien char-making) #technology

Dick Gallien
 

Paul, it could've been 12 yrs. ago since I tried the vertical rr tank with 2 very small batches of brush. When I burned some brush in the 10' dia X 30' vertical tank, there was a 1/2 crack at the bottom of the 7'X7'X 7/8" steel door, that quickly became red hot on the lower 2', but the small burn was about done by then and I didn't (unlike the other post) have any dirt handy by then.  Did a second small batch of brush, with the wet clay packed against the crack, but not enough brush to prove anything.  Was then distracted, which is easier to do when in your 80's  with the big trench in the clay bank, other above ground tanks, but one burn with a 10.5' dia X 16' fuel tank vertically in the ground, so there could've been no air leakage from below.  Lit some old, damp brush near the bottom and kept adding until full of coals, then set a 11' dia steel fuel tank cap on, which have a few inch dia. opening at their cone top, which we mostly covered with a flat stone and tried to plug with dirt around the edges.  The lid was.uncomfortably warm to hold ones hand on it for 3 wks, during which there was the ever present acrid smell of pyrolysis.. I unloaded it with the backhoe at 3.5 wks., a friend sprinkling it lightly.  It produced a 6' high pile of biochar.  It worked, but was too difficult to unload.  

The 10' dia rr tank in the building, sits on a 11' dia X 20" rim of a fuel tank, sitting on a reinforced concrete slab 1' below the concrete floor, with 1' of large pea gravel filling the base of the tank.  There is always a ft. of rain water in the 6" moat around the base of the tank and a 6" air space, where a 11' dia. tank is set over the top of the 10' dia rr tank rim. 

The red hot base of the door, because of the floor crack, made me very aware of the tremendous draw in that 10' dia X 30' chimney      After a dry Aug., we've now had 3 days of rain.  

On Ron's question,    Dick - from your perspective - is such an operation worth this list’s further discussion?   

I'd like to think so Ron..  This is the 3rd time I've posted this recently.  It turned out that Winona County spent 3 wks., with 3 on chain saws, 3 dump trucks, a tracked skid steer with jaws for loading plus supervisors in pickups with Twinkies flashin, with never a word on biochar, hauling each fluffy load  of brush 14 mi. one way to their burn pile less than 100' from a county road, because there was no snow to plow.  The County has had the same "full time sustainability person" for 30 yrs.., who at 65, is the lead $118K paper shuffler on whether the County can support a food waste composter, while in 20 yrs. with no govt. support, we've fed 16,000 tons of food waste to hogs.    ,   


In that healthy soils are the foundation of healthy life and most of our farm and lawn soils are unhealthy, to where corn stalks and lawn thatch are called "ag wastes", organic materials of no value, so turning them into biochar sounds like a great idea, which it isn't, when"wood waste", a natural resource, whose burning has been encouraged by the MDNR Dept. of Forestry since 1993 on to forever, will continue until some of us demonstrate a use from this natural resource that few have heard of.  John Howard, Winona's Sustainability Coordinator, after his first 4 yrs. in a position where the main lesson is to keep ones head way down, was so bothered being helpless about the torching of almost 2K trees, that he offered to anonymously give me $4K with which to buy a band saw.  
Last Sept. John wrote the head of the 11 state NC SARE program in St. Paul about a grant for the City of Winona and The Farm, to turn Winona's waste wood into biochar.  She couldn't see any connection between a forestry product and soil health.  Biochar, what's that?  Ron, the big vertical tank is ready  It probably was half full of fluffy brush the 2 times I tested it.  My Bobcat, that I bought new in 1970, before they had cabs and roll bars fit in the door.  (I was pulling a log backwards down hill, with the bucket up yrs. ago.  Luckily I had the seat belt on.  It went fast, 3/4 of a roll--ending on it's side, with dirt in both posts, just a little above and behind my shoulders--one post with an unhappy earth worm wriggling in it's clod of dirt.    

I'm trying to donate The Farm. The Rodale Inst. was/is interested,and were going to visit from just 175 mi. South at Marion/Cedar Rapids,Iowa, when that straight wind hit them. Between Sue and I.we have 16 children, my oldest being 66.  Even if one was interested in The Farm, which they aren't, if they were, lacking the passion, they'd soon ask why they were struggling on a farm/compost site, when a rich person would pay them a few million for this unusual 175 acres, at the junction of 1 1/4 mi. of 2 trout streams, 3 mi. from the center of Winona, but protected from town by 500' hills..  Thanks, Dick        


On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 12:45 AM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Dick,

 

Please complete the story about how well the upright tank worked as a biochar maker.

 

Paul

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dick Gallien via groups.io
Sent: Friday, September 11, 2020 11:38 PM
To: Ronal Larson <rongretlarson@...>
Cc: Biochar@groups.io; Bill Knauss <wmknauss@...>
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Burning rather than preventing pyrolysis gases (Dick Gallien char-making)

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

Hi Ron--thanks for your interest.

I had a crazy idea over 15 yrs. ago to heat a green house with waste wood, so had a 10' dia X 30' X 7/8" rr tank delivered from Arkansas for $6,000.  Had a 40'X 60' steel building built into a clay bank, with the 40' end made of precast 16' high X 7' sections made for bunker silos, so with the old log truck, I can easily top load the tank. Switched from the greenhouse idea to biochar and had a 7'X7'X 7/8" door cut at the base of the tank.  Tank wt. is over 36,000 lbs.., so it is a little late to set it out in the open.  The City and County burn trees day and night, but I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept., so can burn only between 8 and 4, with no smoke, fumes or flame, except then.  The acrid, sightless fumes of pyrolysis are my only concern, besides the fumes in the building.  If still upright, I'll report.  If one pokes a bureaucracy, they'll respond. .  .  https://www.winonadailynews.com/opinion/letters/dick-gallien-there-s-a-better-way-to-burn-waste/article_657201bb-8de3-5a60-aa83-c73b4384e208.html

 

The turtle/tank is a seperate issue, which I'm sure will work.  Just how to solve the fumes.  Thanks for any suggestions.  Dick 

 

 

On Fri, Sep 11, 2020 at 10:17 PM Ronal Larson <rongretlarson@...> wrote:

List and Dick Gallien,  cc Bill Knauss

        This is to see if there is any list support to using a (very large) TLUD geometry in Dick’s situation.

        The majority of TLUD communications are for cylinders of about 6-8 inch diameter - for cooking of meals. (And plenty on even smaller 3-4 inch diameter for camping).  Many on this list working with 50 gallon sizes - and I know one person working at 100 gallons.

        The largest TLUd I have seen is a converted 500 gallon propane tank - about 3 foot diameter and 10 foot height.    Bill Knauss (cc’d) has successfully operated at this scale for Trolllworks.  Today he made a number of warnings about going larger - but could conceive of working with an 8 hour diameter.    Anyone have evidence to the contrary?

        Warnings:   This scale will look like it is operating cleanly during daylight hours, and may not even appear to be. operating at all.  But at night there will be a visible flame.  So there may need to be approvals from you fire department.

                        There will likely be problems with fuel of radically different sizes.  But maybe you can separate your fuel supply into different sizes. (With the larger sizes taking much longer for the pyrolysis front to reach bottom.).

                        Bill says he might recommend an auger to remove the finished char - vs tipping such a cylinder over.   Bill has experience with augers, but not with this size.

                        Not sure what size containers you have available - but if from a railway, it will have about an 8 foot diameter.    I am thinking of separating a 20 foot oil tanker lengthwise into two ‘identical 10 foot long pieces - each having a capacity of about 500 ft3 = 3750. gallons (using about 7.5 gallons per cubic foot).  But a chimeny will take up about 4 feet of the 10 feet available- so there might be a 300 ft3 volume of wood. - a bit more than 11 cubic yards - with a chance at maybe 3 cubic yards of char - or 6 cubic yards if two are operating together.

        Dick - from your perspective - is such an operation worth this list’s further discussion?   Can you convert anything you have into something like an 8 foot diameter and 10 foot height?    I am not claiming these will work for you - but I do believe a TLUD design should be on the table.   I also believe Bill Knauss would be a good consultant if you have or can obtain such cylinders.

Ron

                        .


Re: [EXTERN] Re: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

Claudia Kammann
 

Thanks, Ron, it is definitely good when more people knowledgeable on biochar are on board!

 

Von: Ronal Larson <rongretlarson@...>
Gesendet: Samstag, 12. September 2020 21:07
An: main@biochar.groups.io
Cc: Kammann, Prof. Dr. Claudia <Claudia.Kammann@...>; Stephen Joseph <joey.stephen@...>; Trevor Richards <trevor@...>
Betreff: [EXTERN] Re: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

 

Claudia, Stephen, Trevor and list

 

            Thanks for the alert.  I decided to apply.  Everyone might be limited to two of 24 groups.   Signing up took about 20 minutes.   No guarantee of acceptance.

 

            I listened last May to a 5-day North-American (more Canadian than US) 4p1000 webinar-type meeting.  Last week the meeting summary was sent out - see; https://www.4p1000.org/sites/default/files/english/report_1st_meeting_4p1000_narm_03_sept_2020_-_english_1.pdf.    

            The word ‘biochar” appears 33 times - I think all related to comments - not presentations.

            The last line of that report’s summary of the first day  was by Paul Luu - the director of 4p1000, who said about biochar (p42) “  "It is important to evaluate it quickly. Farmers are very enthusiastic; scientists are more reluctant." P. Luu.

            This surprises me a little - because most scientists I read (especially soil scientists) are “very enthusiastic’.  As Luu moderated over the 5 days, I thought he was surprised about the many biochar comments - and was always very fair in dealing with biochar commenters.

            4p1000 may sound like a small goal.  It is not.  This group could be a big help to promoting biochar.

 

Ron

 

 



On Sep 12, 2020, at 3:47 AM, Claudia Kammann <claudia.kammann@...> wrote:

 

Hi Joey, Hi all,

 

in a way, I found my way there, too, because I got nominated the representative of Hochschule Geisenheim University for 4per1000 – our institution joined the 4per1000 initiative early on when it was not well known yet.

 

Our president is quite dedicated to all measures combatting climate change and is aware of the utter importance of soils in this regard J, but since he has so much on his plate I volunteered.

 

And as you well know, with me rides the biochar topic... can’t have one without the other. So, here you go ;)

 

chars to all,

Claudia

 

Von: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> Im Auftrag von Stephen Joseph
Gesendet: Samstag, 12. September 2020 07:24
An: main@Biochar.groups.io
Betreff: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

 

sounds like a good one for Kathleen to be on as she is the chair of IBI

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 3:02 PM Trevor Richards <trevor@...> wrote:

I've received an email from 4p1000...


"Invitation to Task Forces of the 4 per 1000 Initiative on soils for food security and climate"
https://wiki.afris.org/display/4Action

I'm wondering if there should be a coordinated effort by international biochar community to participate & advocate for biochar.

 


Re: Preventing escaping gases #tlud #technology

Nando Breiter
 

Hi Paul, 

The original idea was to burn the logs in the half tank and then tip it over on top of the embers. The question is, would an open burn approach lose more heat, and be less efficient in terms of conversion of biomass to char, than a slow controlled burn/pyrolysis carried out under the tank. 

The main objection to a large open burn that Hugh made is it can be dangerous. He is of course right. 

Lots of folks have made char in pits. Dick has made char in a rather large pit. The loss of heat to both the earth and open sky hasn't deterred those efforts. I fully agree that significant amounts of heat will be radiated from an uninsulated tank used as a cover, but I would assume that heat would be conserved by that cover - in comparison to having no cover at all. But even if this is not the case, carrying out the process under the half-tank would be much safer. 

I also agree that driving the moisture out of larger logs will take time. Drying time is not linearly accelerated by addition of heat, especially if most of it is immediately lost to the sky as it is in a burn pile. One advantage to burning the wood to dry it in comparison to heating it slowly under a half-tank cover is that the gas rapidly escaping from the feedstock is not saturated with moisture. But I don't see that as a problem necessarily within the half-tank scenario because I assume that the saturated gas under the cover will help to moderate the rate of pyrolysis. There is a limit to how much water vapor a given amount of gas at a given temperature will retain, and when that limit is reached, evaporation does not occur. Hence, water will evaporate from the wood only as quickly as the corresponding amount of water vapor leaves the system. So again, that moderation may be a plus in the safety category.

Pyrolysis is of course more efficient if the retort is properly insulated, and the feedstock is uniformly sized to the smallest cross sectional thickness the pyrolysis system will support, pre-dried to a moisture content of some 5%, heat distribution to the biomass particles optimized, etc. But, increasing efficiency has a cost. It's amazing how quickly those costs accumulate, the engineers, the fabricators welding and bending 309 stainless, specialized burners able to handle a wide range of gas concentrations, monitoring and control systems ...

Many people wanting to make large quantities of char are not in a position to afford that efficiency. So I've been looking for a low-cost, large scale pyrolysis method suitable for people like Dick and Sue. 




On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 4:59 PM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Nando,

 

My reply is imbedded below:

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Nando Breiter via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 5:36 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

Hello Paul,

 

Thanks for your review of the idea. I would fully agree that varying char qualities would be produced, but since Dick's use is as a soil amendment, that would be perfectly acceptable, particularly in light of the low capital investment involved. I would also agree that it would probably sense to try the idea out with a smaller tank. That said, the idea is similar to the Adam retort, and that's been demonstrated to work. The Adam retort will have better insulating qualities, but ... much of the charcoal made in the world is under earthen heaps.

[PSA>>] I respectfully disagree, and emphasize two of the greatest factors:   Heat rises    and pyrolysis requires time for the heat to reach to the center of the pieces of biomass.

The bottom of the enclosed chamber that holds the biomass in an Adam retort (as in other retorts) has a metal plate under which the hot gases of initial start up and the hot gases of burning the combustible off-gas takes place.   Mother Earth is a large heat sink that prevents  the adequate heating in the earth-lined (on the bottom) configuration being discussed.   Especially bad if the earth is a trench, meaning part of he sidewalls are also earth.   And if the large convex top is metal, that top will radiate away a great deal of the heat needed inside.   If the metal “elongated dome” could be covered with earth (too much work), the earth would help keep the heat inside.

 

Concerning the earthen heaps of traditional char making, that is hardly something to try to  replicate.   They are slow.   Commonly needing a week or more for pyrolysis of wood (big chunks but carefully stacked).   And they must have a vent at the top (plug and lateral leaks) which is smoky (or with much exit of steam/ water vapor with odors of wood that is “cooking” inside.)   

 

Recondensation could become an issue, if the gas in the tank was allowed to cool sufficiently. What I anticipate is that the gas flow rate through the kiln will be low enough that it will tend to function more as an oven. So I'm less concerned about heat not penetrating toward the base of the heap. 

[PSA>>] This configuration  is going to be losing heat in every direction.   I doubt that the combustion to create heat and the gas flow rate through the kiln will be “low.”   Someones’ experiments could help resolve this question.

 

What could be done is automate the air intake so that it opens when the internal temperature measure in the tank falls below, say 300° and the moisture content of the gas remains high enough to signal that water is still being evaporated from the feedstock. Air intake would close again when gas temps reach, say, 550 or 600° C. Once gas moisture content remains "low", the air intake remains closed, allowing exothermically driven pyrolysis to complete the process.

 

I also think the idea to try it at smaller scale is good, but a 55 gallon drum would be too small in my opinion to get a sense of how it works. 

[PSA>>] Agreed.   But maybe you can convince the project proposer to use something [much] less than half of a railroad tank car (which is about 18 tons? And not inexpensive for a possible one-time experiment). 

 

Paul

 

If the gas outlet becomes clogged with condensed tar, smoke will start rising out of the soil surrounding the kiln - so no catastrophic failure in that case. The tank could be lifted if the downstream gas handling process fails in some other way to allow the batch to revert to a bonfire, and then closed again when the flames had begun to die down to embers.

 

The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames.

 

 

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 4:31 AM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Dear Nando and Sue,

 

I respond about Nando’s suggestion that is based on Sue’s thoughts.   

 

Spoiler alert:  The response written here became long, and I conclude that the method will not work in a reliable manner.  Skip to the “Conclusion” if you want the verdict.   Or read here if you want the reasoning.

 

If I understand it correctly, there is a trench mounded up with biomass in it, with a half-cylinder (cut lengthwise) over that trench.  Air entrance and ignition are at one end and exit of emissions is at the other end.   Use of blowers is allowed or chimney to accomplish draft.   But it is a LOW flow of air (oxygen), not a raging fire fed by blasted air.    For this discussion, we will ignore any possible leaks into or out of the configuration.  

 

Did I state the situation correctly.   If not please correct any misstatements above.

 

This is essentially a horizontal  updraft unit (I hesitate to call  it a gasifier, but sort of a pyrolyzer) with fire at the bottom.    If it were in a vertical position, there would be  one major difference.   In a vertical container, the biomass falls by gravity to fill in the gaps at the edges.   But in the horizontal one, gravity pulls the biomass downward from the inside of the top of the cylinder, creating a gap which will be the path of least resistance for any gases to flow from the inlet (ignition) end to the outlet end.  But I will grant that everywhere inside the cylinder there will  be the emission gases, not pockets of fresh air.

 

Ignite it and let it draw for a few minutes so that it is certainly ignited.

 

Then, some new air enters.   An appropriate small amount with a continual flow.   It is drawn toward the exit end.   It will encounter the zone where the initial  fire has been burning and has been giving off emission gases that are pulled/pushed to the exit.   The  fresh air will come into contact with any combustible gases, helping them to be burned, giving more heat and some CO2 and some H2O (and other stuff, probably smoky).   Some of the incoming air will reach the solid biomass fuel, which is by now partially pyrolyzed and giving off some combustible gases through the created layer of charcoal around the pieces of biomass.  

 

Some of the air can reach the hot char (where pyrolysis is completed) and will make that char glow red, burning the char (called char gasification), creating CO  (combustible carbon monoxide) which may or may not be combusted with the incoming air (requires spark and sufficient temperature).   This will continue on and on and on.    The incoming air meets the zone of ignition.   The air (oxygen) cannot get through that zone.  Beyond the zone, there is a flow of hot gases, some of which are “smokey”, plus water vapor from combustion and mostly from any final drying of the biomass in or near that fire zone.

 

Beyond the fire zone, the hot emission gases move through the biomass (or worse, if the gases bypass the biomass by taking the passageway at the top edge of the tank, but ignore that for the moment).   The hot gases will do the necessary drying of the biomass.   Even if the biomass is quite dry at 10 to 20 percent moisture content (MC), there is still moisture coming off of the biomass.   That moisture moves along with the other gases toward the exit end.  

 

2 things can occur with that moisture.  A.  it stays as a vapor and exits this cylinder.   Or B, if the cylinder is long enough and the outside temperature is cold around the tank, the moisture can condense, causing increased wetness at the far end of the pile of biomass.   Not to worry, when the fire eventually gets to that area with the condensed moisture, it just needs to have enough extra heat to re-vaporize the moisture to above 100 deg C.  

 

Expect that all of the gases exiting the cylinder are NON-combustible until all of the biomass has reached minimum temperature for pyrolysis, above 300 degree C.  (and still would be 250 deg C lower than the desired 550 C for the char making, but ignore that for the time being.).  

 

During all of this, there is the consumption of the biomass at the combustion end with the air inlet.   Not just pyrolysis offgases but burning of the charcoal that is being created.   The air reaches the hot charcoal first.   The char must be consumed, and that gives the heat  that goes to the far  end of the cylinder (whether horizontal or vertical).  

 

Eventually, there can be combustible gases exiting the  far end of the  chamber.   Direct them wherever you desire to have them combusted to give heat to drive the pyrolysis.   To combust them requires additional oxygen (air), so they cannot be just simply redirected back into the cylinder.   But the burning gases would  not be a fire on the outside of the container (as if this were a retort) because the bottom half is earth or  dirt or concreate lined surface that is the formation of the trench.  

 

Maybe a feedback of those gases to the ignition end.   Feed in the gases and some air and burn  the gases there.   Good.   More heat, and not burning the biomass or charcoal any longer.   This heat has to reach all  of the biomass and bring the biomass to the desired temperature (say 450 to 550 C?).   Otherwise, there will be different qualities of biochar created in that batch, including possibly even some merely torrefied wood.  

 

So now, remember this:   there  is a passageway for hot gases up near the inside of the top of the inverted half cylinder, and there is a lot of biomass that is actually touching or within inches of the earth that forms the bottom of the chamber and keeps that biomass sufficiently cool to prevent pyrolysis or maybe even torrefaction or even full  drying.

 

*****

Conclusion:   Such a configuration may have produced some charcoal in  different efforts by different people.   But there is no evidence that the efforts were sufficiently successful to merit telling others about it, nor for launching a charcoal business.  Too many things are “sub-optimal” (a polite way to say “wrong”).   (If I am incorrect, the person(s) who solve such an issue of making quality biochar with such a simple method deserve all the praises and financial rewards that should flow to them.)

 

Recommendation:   If anyone produces such a configuration and puts it to use (at whatever size), please report back you experience, either favorable of unfavorable.    

 

And I do suggest that the trials should be done SMALL, such as with a 55 gallon half drum.   At least then you will not have a 30 foot long pile of biomass that is 8 to 10 ft high under a few tons of railway tank car steel, not to mention the costs and efforts to have made such a giant experiment. 

 

Paul

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Nando Breiter via groups.io
Sent: Thursday, September 10, 2020 12:20 PM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

Dick,

 

I'll try to answer your questions inline below.

 

 When the tank/turtle is rolled onto it's 6'X 30' belly and it's hot gases rise to it's 8' top and then are forced down along each side, into the charring mass, how much of the pressure build up, would you expect to be reduced by burning those gases? 

All of the gases would be flared, and there would only be a very minimal pressure difference. Our 10 m3 batch kiln uses 8" heat and corrosion resistant stainless steel tubing to transport the gases to the flare, which is up on a stand to keep the flame out of harm's way.

 

Rather than interrupt the pyrolysis cycle by removing gases from the top, where would you suggest a pipe be placed, to balance the pressure?


Pyrolysis won't be interrupted. Keep in mind that the gases will escape in any case. 

To keep the pyrolysis gases within a pyrolysis retort, you would need a very expensive kiln that could withstand extremely high pressures, easily costing 10's of millions of dollars for the capacity we are discussing. Nikolaus Foidl tried to build a small high pressure retort, and he ran into a world of trouble getting the access door for the biomass to seal. I don't know what the upper range is of a perfectly sealed retort, but Nikolaus was trying to hit 50 bar, if I remember correctly, and his initial tests at about 500° C saw the seal fail at some abysmally low value of perhaps 1.5 - 2 bar. I think the problem here is he wanted a large diameter access hatch that would allow for the easy loading and unloading of biomass, rather than a manhole sized access hatch where it would be "easier" to maintain the needed seal to reach 50 bar. His design had redundant relief values, and he intended to fully bury it in a containment pit in case of structural failure, which would lead to a massive explosion.

 

With the approach you've proposed, you aren't anywhere near being able to contain pyrolysis gases. So there will be virtually no pressure buildup under the tank. If there is for a moment, the gases will create one or more channels out of the kiln through the soil.

 

I'm proposing to create an easy escape route so we can flare them, instead of allowing them to escape through the soil. Once they are flared, you'll have an absolutely transparent emission of CO2 and H2O from the stack, like the emissions from a natural gas flame, rather than a mix of CO2, CO, CH4 (methane) perhaps some H2 (hydrogen) and a wide variety of complex hydrocarbons as gases or tar microdroplets. 

As you have heard, pyrolysis is exothermic. What that fancy word means is that as the biomass thermally decomposes at temperatures above 300° C, oxygen and carbon atoms, or carbon based molecules, and eventually hydrogen, are released, and as these recombine, either within the biomass particle on their way out, or just outside of the biomass particle, that reaction gives off heat. It is that exothermic heat that maintains a pyrolysis reaction in a batch process such as you are proposing once access to air is limited. 

The exothermic reaction in pyrolysis is the same reaction we call a fire, oxygen combining with carbon and or hydrogen, except that the amount of available oxygen is limited to that which is being decomposed from the biomass. It is that limit of oxygen that prevents the entire batch from being oxidized. That limit also self-regulates the temperature of a pyrolysis batch in a well designed kiln that conserves heat to between 450° - 550°C. Why? Because there is not enough oxygen in the biomass to elevate the temperature higher than that. 


This is also why a pyrolysis reaction in a closed batch stops; it runs out of oxygen.

Whether or not the pyrolysis reaction is self-sustaining depends on if there is sufficient exothermic heat available to continue to heat the remaining un-pyrolyzed biomass above 300° C. The critical factor here is how dry the biomass is. Evaporating water out of biomass cools the biomass down, so the entirety of a biomass particle will not heat above 99° C until all the water is evaporated out of it (in a simple kiln operating at atmospheric pressure). So if you start a batch, close the lid, and the temperature drops off, the biomass is still too wet for the reaction to be self-sustaining. 

 

In this case, which I certainly think will happen in your situation, what you could try is that rather than open the lid again, just let some air into it, from the end opposite the gas flare burner. You should hopefully have sufficient draft on the chimney to pull air into the kiln. Let a bit of air into the kiln to bring the temperature up to dry the wood. You don't want a roaring fire. A charred surface forms somewhat of a seal that makes it harder for evaporating water to escape.

So now we are getting very close to the Adam retort design. Here's an outline of a further evolution of Susan's idea that will be much safer and efficient to operate, while producing a reasonably uniform biochar with the minimum amount of biomass consumed to produce the heat necessary, and very little to no emissions besides CO2 and water vapor.

Sue's Evolved Biochar Kiln Concept - Details to be refined

  • Cut the tank in half lengthwise. 
  • (Optionally) dig a ramped trench that is slightly shorter and narrower than the tank, so that the tank will fit over the trench as a cover. After the batch is finished, a tractor or front end loader should be able to drive into the trench to remove the finished char
  • Fix the tank-half to the side of the trench so that it hinges closed over the trench to act as a cover. The hinge mechanism could use heavy chain welded to the tank and rebar driven into the ground. We only need to ensure the tank-half stays in the proper position as it is being pulled over.
  • Fix a longer heavy chain or better a cable to the other outer lip of the retort lid (tank-half) to be used to pull the lid over the trench with a tractor. If the cable is light enough to be tossed over the tank-half, then the same cable could be used for opening and closing the lid. Otherwise, 2 cables can be used, one to close and one to open.
  • Steel or wooden braces could be used to prevent the retort lid from tipping all the way over when it is opened. It should open past 90° so it stays put. If it is braced open, like the lid on a treasure chest, the cable should be anchored to prevent it from blowing closed in a strong wind.
  • The kiln is loaded with wood, generally oriented along the length of the trench and heaped to fill the space that will be enclosed by the lid, and the lid is then closed. No open fire is used.
  • The kiln is designed to encourage a pyrolysis front to move from one end to the other along the length of the half-tank / trench assembly. 
  • On the starting end, there is an opening in the tank near the bottom connected to a tube. This tube can be closed off, allow air into it, or allow hot flue gas from a wood fire into it. (If a large "stove" with a wood fire in it is used to initially heat the kiln, then that much less wood in the batch will be consumed to provide the heat necessary. So this is a trade off between maximizing the batch output or making operation more simple.)
  • At the other end, a tube is fixed to the tank-half. Midway up should be fine. This tube angles downward into a combustion chamber which will be used to flare the gases. The angle is meant to allow condensate that may form to run down into the combustion chamber. It has a tall chimney on it to encourage a draft to gently pull hot gases through the kiln. We can call this the gas burner.
  • Ideally, the gas burner should be moveable so that when the retort is closed and the tubing is fixed to the half-tank lid, the gas burner position can be adjusted as necessary to attach the other end of the tube to it. If the trench is ramped to allow machinery access for unloading, then the gas burner needs to be either mobile enough to easily move it out of place or positioned off center so it is out of the way of the ramp.
  • In the initial stages of a batch, the gas burner flame will need to be supported to remain lit because of the moisture content of the gas. What this means is that the humidity in the gas will extinguish the flame, largely because it is too dilute to sustain itself. There are options here, the easiest of which may be to burn a little wood in this chamber. The plus is this would be a simple solution, the minus is that someone may need to add wood every hour or so.
  • At the other end of the kiln, there is optionally what I will call the wood stove, to keep it simple. Wood is loaded into it, and the flue gases are directed into the kiln and drawn through either by a small squirrel cage blower if the intent is to simply dry the batch, or a small wood fire is lit in the "gas burner" to create a draft that will draw the moisture out of the kiln if the intent is to initiate pyrolysis more quickly
  • Easy startup of pyrolysis will depend on having thoroughly dry wood at the starting end. Ideally, smaller, pre-dried branches are loaded at the starting end. The core idea here is that once pyrolysis begins at the starting end, the heat generated will continue to dry and heat the feedstock ahead of the pyrolysis front, which will slowly advance from the starting end of the kiln to the finish point nearest the gas burner. So, operation is in several stages:
  1. Pre-drying the wood, particularly at the starting end. Smaller starting end wood can be dried outside of the kiln before loading it if more convenient. Or a large wood stove can be used to inject heat into the kiln to dry in particular the first 3-5 feet of wood. You can think of this as pyrolysis kindling. The drier our pyrolysis kindling, and the more we have of it at the leading end, the easier it will be to initiate pyrolysis. 
  2. Light the starting wood on fire at the starting end, allowing air into the kiln and controlling the amount of air to keep the flame gentle. At this stage, a wood (or propane or wood pellet ...) fire is started in the gas burner to provide some draft to pull the gases through and burn off any flammable gases coming out of Sue's kiln. The objective is to raise temperatures at the starting end sufficiently for pyrolysis to be maintained exothermically.
  3. Once pyrolysis can be maintained without air being added at the starting end, the air inlet is closed. Wood is occasionally added to the gas burner to help maintain the flare.
  4. If temperatures begin to fall in the kiln, the air inlet is slightly opened again to bring them up. Whether or not the exothermically available heat is sufficient to dry the wood ahead of the pyrolysis front is dependent on the moisture content and thickness of the wood.
  5. Once most of the moisture is driven out of the wood, the flare will continue to burn even without support. So it can operate overnight without being attended to if wood has been used to support the flame.

This approach is based on the principals at play in one of our proven vertical batch kiln designs that has been built and operated a number of times in South America. Because it is designed to allow a pyrolysis front to move through the batch, the amount of burnable gas it will produce remains at consistent, manageable levels. A probe penetrating the kiln lid would measure the internal temperature, and the aim would be to keep it below 450°-550 C or so. More than that and too much air is entering the kiln. 

 

The biomass that still needs to dry will not dry that much more quickly if higher temperatures are used. Higher temps will also corrode the tank more quickly. The velocity of drying will depend more on the rate at which water vapor laden gas is removed than the heat used. We will be depending primarily on the gases being produced within the kiln to develop the pressure needed to push them out through the burner.

 

Now, it may seem to be much more effective to leave the lid open light the whole pile on fire, but in this case, most of the heat being produced is immediately lost to the atmosphere, so we are transforming a significant portion of our biomass to CO2 for no useful purpose. And no matter how much heat is applied at the surface of a large log, drying simply takes time. Those 2 facts together mean that much more of the biomass will be burned to dry the biomass in an open flame approach than is actually necessary. Yes, you could produce a relatively small pile of glowing embers at the bottom of the trench after a long open fire, and then close the lid completely and just let the heat dissipate. Then no burner would be needed. But, to produce the same amount of char as you will get from a closed lid pyrolysis front approach, you'll need several batches and need much more wood.

 

When we close the half-tank lid to this trench kiln from the beginning of the batch, and only add air very judiciously, the heat we are producing from the addition of air is used very efficiently. 

So that's Sue's evolved biochar kiln in a nutshell. Much safer, much more efficient in its use of heat and wood, minimized CO2 emissions compared to char produced, and with the addition of the ramped trench, hopefully much easier to unload than a large pit while still maximizing the batch capacity under a half tank.

I'll leave it here for now.





 

The sealed 55 ga barrel of "waste wood", set over a wood fire, with the 3/8" hole flaming skyward vs retorting, should produce a little wonder.among visitors.

 

In this country, where most urban organic materials are officially labeled: "wood waste", "food waste", "yard waste" and "human waste", to be burned, buried, flushed or landfilled, is blindly accepted by most.  Only fools would be so determined, while finding fun/excitement in trying to turn "wood waste", which is being very efficiently disposed of across this country with matches and lighters into biochar, which can benefit healthy soil and the life that depends on it for hundreds to thousands of years.

 

The price/maintenance of whole tree chippers is out of sight for most..  Logs not good for lumber or firewood (I've heated only with wood for 54 yrs)  can be split,  but until processes are ironed out, the intense heat and patience, with no down dizing, will result in some biochar. 

 

I mentioned to Hugh a few yrs. ago about the trench into a clay bank, 24' W 12'D X60', with brush stacked 10' above the upper ground level, lit on top and when burned down, I spread two 1500 ga. tanks of creek water on it and Sue ran 4 hose sprinklers continuously for 11 days, with a steady stream of clear water running out the lower end.  Hugh said that water would've had a slight lemon taste.  Sue, who has always said "It worked !!", after I dozed it shut, just said the only time there was the acrid smell was when I turned the hose off (which is an interesting thought) in that when the DNR game warden visited in June about a pyrolysis complaint and we can have no smoke or fumes other than between 8 and 4. Might 2 or 3 fine spraying nozzles over the 10' dia X 30' tank top hold the authorities off, while we consult with all of you?  

 

My goal is to mix the biochar in compost and spread it on the farm fields.  If any microbes complain about their residence I'll suggest they visit the majority of Mid West farm fields, that are dead/over dosed on chem's and headed for the Gulf.  The 11' wide dozer blade would  easily make a trench of that width.  When the brush was burned down and I've done that with wet compost, dozed dirt or compost over the burn without the tracks touching the pyrolysizing covered pile.  The pyrolysis fumes will continue, so we could test light hosing; however, wouldn't the toxicity of the pyrolysis gases be trapped in the covering of dirt or compost ?.

 

Eliminating smoke and fumes after 4pm is essential--because I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept..  We have a 1500 gallon liquid manure tank and a nearby trout stream, but a flooded trench would be an impossible mud hole.  The bricks this house was built from came from an adjoining brickyard.  

 

I don't remember in photos of large kilns built into slopes in S.A., with condensate being collected from chimney pipes on the above slope, whether they bothered to burn off the fumes.   

Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.  Dick

   

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 8:29 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Susan, 

 

You might consider sorting the feedstock by size (cross-sectional thickness). Batch similar sizes together. It's like baking cookies. Bake all the same size together to ensure they are all baked to the same degree during a fixed amount of time they share together in the oven. If you bake bread and cookies together for the same amount of time, either the cookies will be burned or the bread underbaked. 

 

When you sort feedstock like this for a batch kiln, it ensures that the processing time is sufficient to transform it to char, while not excessively "baking" the smaller bits into gases. The large rounds might take a few days, the smaller branches a few hours. If the small branches are combined with the large rounds, they will be converted mostly to gases and ash. 


Kind regards,

 

Nando

 

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 12:49 AM Susan <suemegg@...> wrote:

Nando,

 

Thank you fir your reply.

 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of our feedstock size is very variable.  We operate a compost site, and loads come in via car trunk loads, pickup trucks and full size dump trucks.  So we have from small bundles of twigs up to tree trunks.

 

The varying size makes for a longer time frame for charring the wood waste.

 

We had considered attempting to flare off the gas and burn it, hoping that would problematic escape of gases and smoke into the atmosphere.

 

Susan

 

 

 

On Tue, Sep 8, 2020, 4:04 PM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Susan,

 

The issue is that pyrolysis gases will take up vastly more space than the same atoms and molecules as solids, so pressure will quickly build up within the tank and the gases will have to go somewhere. 

Condensable gases may be trapped in the soil barrier if there is enough to cool them sufficiently to become liquids or solids before they escape. Non-condensables such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and methane will escape into the atmosphere. If you see smoke leaking out, then that would be an indication that your soil barrier is not sufficient to condense them.

 

What you might consider is to create a small outlet for the gases at the end of the tank, and flare them off in an appropriately designed / jury-rigged burner.

 

If you are venting the gases and flaring them, and the brush consists of thin branches rather than thick tree trunks, I would assume that a batch would complete itself in hours rather than days. All that needs to happen is the heat generated needs to penetrate to the depth of each particle of biomass at temperatures over 300° C for the reaction to become exothermic. If the brush is really thin, then once you flip it over, pyrolysis will largely have already occurred and the char will simply need to cool in an oxygen starved environment under the half tank.

 

How thick are the branches of the "brush" you have available?

 

 

 

 

On Tue, Sep 8, 2020 at 6:16 PM Susan <suemegg@...> wrote:

Scenario...   burn brush in a 20 to 30ft long half tank, cut lengthwise, then roll the tank over and put dirt along it to prevent escaping smoke and gases.  The charring process would continue for several days.  

 

How successful do you think our efforts to prevent polluting gases and smoke escaping would be?

 

Susan


--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


--
Nando Breiter
http://biochar.info
CarbonZero Sagl
Astano, Switzerland


Re: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000

Ron Larson
 

Claudia, Stephen, Trevor and list

Thanks for the alert.  I decided to apply.  Everyone might be limited to two of 24 groups.   Signing up took about 20 minutes.   No guarantee of acceptance.

I listened last May to a 5-day North-American (more Canadian than US) 4p1000 webinar-type meeting.  Last week the meeting summary was sent out - see; https://www.4p1000.org/sites/default/files/english/report_1st_meeting_4p1000_narm_03_sept_2020_-_english_1.pdf.    
The word ‘biochar” appears 33 times - I think all related to comments - not presentations.
The last line of that report’s summary of the first day  was by Paul Luu - the director of 4p1000, who said about biochar (p42) “  "It is important to evaluate it quickly. Farmers are very enthusiastic; scientists are more reluctant." P. Luu.
This surprises me a little - because most scientists I read (especially soil scientists) are “very enthusiastic’.  As Luu moderated over the 5 days, I thought he was surprised about the many biochar comments - and was always very fair in dealing with biochar commenters.
4p1000 may sound like a small goal.  It is not.  This group could be a big help to promoting biochar.

Ron



On Sep 12, 2020, at 3:47 AM, Claudia Kammann <claudia.kammann@...> wrote:

Hi Joey, Hi all,
 
in a way, I found my way there, too, because I got nominated the representative of Hochschule Geisenheim University for 4per1000 – our institution joined the 4per1000 initiative early on when it was not well known yet.
 
Our president is quite dedicated to all measures combatting climate change and is aware of the utter importance of soils in this regard J, but since he has so much on his plate I volunteered.
 
And as you well know, with me rides the biochar topic... can’t have one without the other. So, here you go ;)
 
chars to all,
Claudia
 
Von: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> Im Auftrag von Stephen Joseph
Gesendet: Samstag, 12. September 2020 07:24
An: main@Biochar.groups.io
Betreff: [EXTERN] Re: [Biochar] Creation of Task Forces to advance the implementation of the "4 per 1000" Strategic Plan #4per1000
 
sounds like a good one for Kathleen to be on as she is the chair of IBI
 
On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 3:02 PM Trevor Richards <trevor@...> wrote:
I've received an email from 4p1000...

"Invitation to Task Forces of the 4 per 1000 Initiative on soils for food security and climate"
https://wiki.afris.org/display/4Action

I'm wondering if there should be a coordinated effort by international biochar community to participate & advocate for biochar.



GHG Targets for Biochar Processes #corcs #ghg #co2e

Tom Miles
 

What GHG targets should we set for biochars?

 

According to “cradle to cradle” life cycle assessments the carbon sequestration potential for most biochar systems is about 2.5 tonnes of CO2e per tonne of biochar. How do offsets from energy recovery impact the GHG potential? GHG impact of fuels are often expressed in terms of the amount of energy produced, such as kg CO2e/MJ. Energy recovered from carbonization (~30%-50%) can be used for heat (thermal renewable energy credits, CO2e/MJ), enhanced gaseous fuel (Renewable Natural Gas, RNG) when added to anaerobic digestors (CO2e/MJ), or electricity via turbines or IC engines or turbines, (CO2e/kWh).  How do biochar systems that recover heat, electricity, or transportation fuels like RNG, compare with other renewable fuels like biomass energy, biodiesel, grain ethanol or cellulosic ethanol? How does that vary as we increase carbon recovery and reduce energy co-products?

 

Tom

 

 


Re: What Wildlife and Conservation Groups Support Biochar? #conservation #wildlife #ngo

Paul McCullough
 

Sierra Club’s Agriculture and Food Policy promotes biochar to restore the carbon content of our degraded soils and the new Board of Directors initiative for Climate Adaptation and Restoration lists biochar along with other soil carbon sequestration techniques as the low cost, low hanging fruit to achieve the IPCC’s recommendations to implement Negative Emission Technologies. But even among those focusing on Climate Change, awareness of biochar is limited.

From my experience, only a couple of Sierra Club’s staff and almost zero volunteer members know about biochar’s potential for habitat improvement or watershed restoration. When I promote the possibilities to the Water Sentinels or other teams, I’m met with blank looks or negative comments about the dangers from PAHs or land grabs for biofuels. I find there is very little knowledge and much misinformation among so called Green groups regarding the potential of biochar to address any environmental issues.

Paul McCullough Co-Chair
Sierra Club Grassroots Network
Food and Agriculture Team
pdmac@...


On Sep 11, 2020, at 6:31 PM, Tom Miles <tmiles@...> wrote:

What wildlife and conservation groups support biochar for habitat, forage, water and stream restoration or other purposes? We have done projects for the Sage Grouse Initiative and with Soil and Water Conservation Districts to remove and convert juniper and pinyon pine to biochar to improve rangeland. Do chapters of organizations like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Ducks Unlimited, Trout Unlimited, Sierra Club know about the benefits of biochar for habitat improvement, stream and forage restoration?
 
Tom    


Re: Burning rather than preventing pyrolysis gases (Dick Gallien char-making) #technology

Ron Larson
 

List,  Dick,  Paul, and Bill

I don’t think it was ever operated - but also that it probably wasn’t ever intended as a TLUD.  My experience with TLUDs is that odors are not a problem.

Dick:

Do you have or can get access to the 8' x 10’ size (or smaller)?

Did you ever operate your 10’ x 30’ cylinder in any way?   Is it now potentially operable?    (No need to fill the 30’ - can have a 20 foot chimney)

Bill:

Can you forward the short video of you working on a 10’ high TLUD?    And could Dick use a front end loader to replace the auger system in your video?

Anyone:  

Too big for a TLUD?     How big can a TLUD be?

Ron



On Sep 11, 2020, at 11:44 PM, Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Dick,
 
Please complete the story about how well the upright tank worked as a biochar maker.
 
Paul
 
Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com
         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud
         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434
Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org  
Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com
Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)
         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.
 
From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dick Gallien via groups.io
Sent: Friday, September 11, 2020 11:38 PM
To: Ronal Larson <rongretlarson@...>
Cc: Biochar@groups.io; Bill Knauss <wmknauss@...>
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Burning rather than preventing pyrolysis gases (Dick Gallien char-making)
 
[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...] 
Hi Ron--thanks for your interest.
I had a crazy idea over 15 yrs. ago to heat a green house with waste wood, so had a 10' dia X 30' X 7/8" rr tank delivered from Arkansas for $6,000.  Had a 40'X 60' steel building built into a clay bank, with the 40' end made of precast 16' high X 7' sections made for bunker silos, so with the old log truck, I can easily top load the tank. Switched from the greenhouse idea to biochar and had a 7'X7'X 7/8" door cut at the base of the tank.  Tank wt. is over 36,000 lbs.., so it is a little late to set it out in the open.  The City and County burn trees day and night, but I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept., so can burn only between 8 and 4, with no smoke, fumes or flame, except then.  The acrid, sightless fumes of pyrolysis are my only concern, besides the fumes in the building.  If still upright, I'll report.  If one pokes a bureaucracy, they'll respond. .  . https://www.winonadailynews.com/opinion/letters/dick-gallien-there-s-a-better-way-to-burn-waste/article_657201bb-8de3-5a60-aa83-c73b4384e208.html
 
The turtle/tank is a seperate issue, which I'm sure will work.  Just how to solve the fumes.  Thanks for any suggestions.  Dick 
 
 
On Fri, Sep 11, 2020 at 10:17 PM Ronal Larson <rongretlarson@...> wrote:
List and Dick Gallien,  cc Bill Knauss

        This is to see if there is any list support to using a (very large) TLUD geometry in Dick’s situation.

        The majority of TLUD communications are for cylinders of about 6-8 inch diameter - for cooking of meals. (And plenty on even smaller 3-4 inch diameter for camping).  Many on this list working with 50 gallon sizes - and I know one person working at 100 gallons.

        The largest TLUd I have seen is a converted 500 gallon propane tank - about 3 foot diameter and 10 foot height.    Bill Knauss (cc’d) has successfully operated at this scale for Trolllworks.  Today he made a number of warnings about going larger - but could conceive of working with an 8 hour diameter.    Anyone have evidence to the contrary?

        Warnings:   This scale will look like it is operating cleanly during daylight hours, and may not even appear to be. operating at all.  But at night there will be a visible flame.  So there may need to be approvals from you fire department.

                        There will likely be problems with fuel of radically different sizes.  But maybe you can separate your fuel supply into different sizes. (With the larger sizes taking much longer for the pyrolysis front to reach bottom.).

                        Bill says he might recommend an auger to remove the finished char - vs tipping such a cylinder over.   Bill has experience with augers, but not with this size.

                        Not sure what size containers you have available - but if from a railway, it will have about an 8 foot diameter.    I am thinking of separating a 20 foot oil tanker lengthwise into two ‘identical 10 foot long pieces - each having a capacity of about 500 ft3 = 3750. gallons (using about 7.5 gallons per cubic foot).  But a chimeny will take up about 4 feet of the 10 feet available- so there might be a 300 ft3 volume of wood. - a bit more than 11 cubic yards - with a chance at maybe 3 cubic yards of char - or 6 cubic yards if two are operating together.

        Dick - from your perspective - is such an operation worth this list’s further discussion?   Can you convert anything you have into something like an 8 foot diameter and 10 foot height?    I am not claiming these will work for you - but I do believe a TLUD design should be on the table.   I also believe Bill Knauss would be a good consultant if you have or can obtain such cylinders.

Ron

                        .



Re: Preventing escaping gases #tlud #technology

Dick Gallien
 

Hi Paul, Sue doesn't like turtles, (she shouldn't have confused you into 18 tons) but I do (did I tell you about hatching 6K soft shelled turtle eggs, I dug on Ms. R. sandbars summer of '72) ?  She's convinced we'll lose our 8 to 4 burn permit, because of the fumes from a rr tank/turtle.  With all of your suggestions, we must flare or make use of those fumes, because only with a clutch of tank turtles, cooking nearly full time, do I see making a dent in the hundreds of trees Winona torches each year, thereby becoming Winona's Farm Compost Site, instead of another rich person's locked gate show off estate, while helping spread the good word about biochar.  .  .      




On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 10:23 AM Paul S Anderson <psanders@...> wrote:

Ray,

 

Your explanation is about the best way I have heard to get rid of large stumps.   You are essentially using them to creat a “thick walled” container that can be partially pyrolyzed with each batch event.

 

I hope all is well for you.   Glad to hear that you are still so active.

 

Paul

 

Doc / Dr TLUD / Paul S. Anderson, PhD --- Website:   www.drtlud.com

         Email:  psanders@...       Skype:   paultlud

         Phone:  Office: 309-452-7072    Mobile & WhatsApp: 309-531-4434

Exec. Dir. of Juntos Energy Solutions NFP    Go to: www.JuntosNFP.org 

Inventor of RoCC kilns for biochar and energy:  See  www.woodgas.com

Author of “A Capitalist Carol” (free digital copies at www.capitalism21.org)

         with pages 88 – 94 about solving the world crisis for clean cookstoves.

 

From: main@Biochar.groups.io <main@Biochar.groups.io> On Behalf Of Ray Menke via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, September 12, 2020 7:16 AM
To: main@biochar.groups.io
Subject: Re: [Biochar] Preventing escaping gases

 

[This message came from an external source. If suspicious, report to abuse@...]

"The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames."

After making charcoal about 400 times in 55 gallon drums using wood from slash piles, I ended up with some whole tree trunks, and tree roots with embedded rocks, mud, nails, etc, that could not/would not be sawn with a chainsaw.  The solution was to push two large logs together using a front-end loader, but leaving a two foot space between them, and then loading this space as one would load a TLUD container, with thorny brush and vines at the top.  After lighting, let it burn for a while, then add more brush, bark, and other junk wood, just as you would do in a cone kiln.  This all burns very hot, with almost no smoke, and after a couple of hours most of the flames are gone, and a giant pile of glowing char remains (in the center).  Then, several hundred gallons of pond water can be used to extinguish the whole stack.  The next day, the loader separates the two logs, and they are scraped down with a heavy Swiss Hoe, Hatchet, or other scraping device.  The logs lose several inches of hardwood, and the char/charcoal can be raked into large piles.  The ash (not very much) and fines run out into the pasture where the grass grows much greener and is eaten first by cows and calves.  (They really like it.)

After more thorny brush accumulates, and more semi-rotted tree trunks are discovered, the whole process is repeated with the two (smaller) original logs or especially tree roots.

I have experimented with old tin roofing or other scrap steel as a "container" for the two tree trunks, but it didn't seem worth the effort.  A loader of clay works well.

After it is all over, there is a big pile of charcoal, no white ash, and removal of large piles of fine thorny brush.  (Mesquite and Huisache)  No smoke, either.  Often, there are quite a few brands that will fit into my wood stove, and these are set aside to be added to the wood pile when there is no chance of them re-igniting.

 

On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 5:36 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Hello Paul,

 

Thanks for your review of the idea. I would fully agree that varying char qualities would be produced, but since Dick's use is as a soil amendment, that would be perfectly acceptable, particularly in light of the low capital investment involved.

closed, allowing exothermically driven pyrolysis to complete the process.

 

 other way to allow the batch to revert to a bonfire, and then closed again when the flames had begun to die down to embers.

 

The fallback if the experiment completely fails would be to make a bonfire and close the half-tank over it to extinguish the flames.

 

 

 

In this country, where most urban organic materials are officially labeled: "wood waste", "food waste", "yard waste" and "human waste", to be burned, buried, flushed or landfilled, is blindly accepted by most.  Only fools would be so determined, while finding fun/excitement in trying to turn "wood waste", which is being very efficiently disposed of across this country with matches and lighters into biochar, which can benefit healthy soil and the life that depends on it for hundreds to thousands of years.

 

The price/maintenance of whole tree chippers is out of sight for most..  Logs not good for lumber or firewood (I've heated only with wood for 54 yrs)  can be split,  but until processes are ironed

 

I mentioned to Hugh a few yrs. ago about the trench into a clay bank, 24' W 12'D X60', with brush stacked 10' above the upper ground level, lit on top and when burned down, I spread two 1500 ga. tanks of creek water on it and Sue ran 4 hose sprinklers continuously for 11 days, with a steady stream of clear water running out the lower end.  Hugh said that water would've had a slight lemon taste.  Sue, who has always said "It worked !!", after I dozed it shut, just said the only time there was the acrid smell was when I turned the hose off (which is an interesting thought) in that when the DNR game warden visited in June about a pyrolysis complaint and we can have no smoke or fumes other than between 8 and 4. Might 2 or 3 fine spraying nozzles over the 10' dia X 30' tank top hold the authorities off, while we consult with all of you?  

 

My goal is to mix the biochar in compost and spread it on the farm fields.  If any microbes complain about their residence I'll suggest they visit the majority of Mid West farm fields, that are dead/over dosed on chem's and headed for the Gulf.  The 11' wide dozer blade would  easily make a trench of that width.  When the brush was burned down and I've done that with wet compost, dozed dirt or compost over the burn without the tracks touching the pyrolysizing covered pile.  The pyrolysis fumes will continue, so we could test light hosing; however, wouldn't the toxicity of the pyrolysis gases be trapped in the covering of dirt or compost ?.

 

Eliminating smoke and fumes after 4pm is essential--because I've poked the DNR Forestry Dept..  We have a 1500 gallon liquid manure tank and a nearby trout stream, but a flooded trench would be an impossible mud hole.  The bricks this house was built from came from an adjoining brickyard.  

 

I don't remember in photos of large kilns built into slopes in S.A., with condensate being collected from chimney pipes on the above slope, whether they bothered to burn off the fumes.   

Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.  Dick

   

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 8:29 AM Nando Breiter <nando@...> wrote:

Susan, 

 

You might consider sorting the feedstock by size (cross-sectional thickness). Batch similar sizes together. It's like baking cookies. Bake all the same size together to ensure they are all baked to the same degree during a fixed amount of time they share together in the oven. If you bake bread and cookies together for the same amount of time, either the cookies will be burned or the bread underbaked. 

 

When you sort feedstock like this for a batch kiln, it ensures that the processing time is sufficient to transform it to char, while not excessively "baking" the smaller bits into gases. The large rounds might take a few days, the smaller branches a few hours. If the small branches are combined with the large rounds, they will be converted mostly to gases and ash. 


Kind regards,

 

Nando

 

 

On Wed, Sep 9, 2020 at 12:49 AM Susan <suemegg@...> wrote:

Nando,

 

Thank you fir your reply.

 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of our feedstock size is very variable.  We operate a compost site, and loads come in via car trunk loads, pickup trucks and full size dump trucks.  So we have from small bundles of twigs up to tree trunks.

 

 

 

 

 



--

Ray  Menke

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