The fate of trace elements in fluidised bed combustion of sewage sludge and wood
Journal article, 2007

Combustion tests have been carried out in a fluidised bed boiler to investigate the fate of trace elements during co-combustion of wood and municipal sewage sludge. The approach was to collect fuel and ash samples and to perform thermodynamic equilibrium calculations for gasification (reducing) and combustion (oxidising) conditions. Trace elements are found in the ash. Even most of the highly volatile Hg is captured in the bag filter ash. The bag filter ash offers higher surface area than the secondary cyclone ash and enhances the capture of Hg. There is no obvious correlation between capture and parameters investigated (sludge precipitation agent and lime addition). As, Cd, Hg, Pb, Se, Sb and Tl are predicted by equilibrium calculations to be volatile in the combustion chamber under oxidising conditions and Hg even at the filter temperature (150°C). Reducing conditions promote, in some case more than others, the volatility of As, Cd, Pb, Sb, Se, Tl and Zn. The opposite effect was observed for Cu and Ni. Data points to the necessity of including bag filter in the gas cleaning system in order to achieve good removal of toxic trace elements.


Sewage sludge

Trace element


Anna-Lena Elled

Lars-Erik Åmand

Chalmers, Energy and Environment, Energy Technology

Bo G Leckner

Chalmers, Energy and Environment, Energy Technology

Bengt-Åke Andersson


Vol. 86 5-6 843-852

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