Potential for thermochemical conversion of biomass residues from the integrated sugar-ethanol process – Fate of ash and ash-forming elements

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Meheretu Jaleta Dirbeba, Anders Brink, Nikolai DeMartini, Maria Zevenhoven, Mikko Hupa
Publisher: Elsevier Applied Science
Publication year: 2017
Journal: Bioresource Technology
Volume number: 234
Start page: 188
End page: 197
eISSN: 1873-2976


In this work, potential for thermochemical conversion of biomass residues from an integrated sugar-ethanol process and the fate of ash and ash-forming elements in the process are presented. Ash, ash-forming elements, and energy flows in the process were determined using mass balances and analyses of eight different biomass samples for ash contents, elemental compositions, and heating values. The results show that the ash content increases from the sugarcane to the final residue, vinasse. The cane straw, which is left in the field, contains one-third of the energy and 25% of the K and Cl while the vinasse contains 2% of the energy and 40% of the K and Cl in the cane. K and Cl in biomass fuels cause corrosion and fouling problems in boilers and gasifiers. Over 85% of these elements in the straw are water soluble indicating that water leaching would improve it for utilization in thermochemical conversion.


Ash-forming elements, Biomass residue, Fuel fractionation, Sugarcane straw, Thermochemical conversion

Last updated on 2019-19-06 at 03:57