Waste Incineration: major step forward in combustion gas measurement
On 9 April 2008, scientists from the JRC Institute for Energy (IE) have been the first to be able to measure the whole set of combustion gases directly on the grate of the incinerator. This was done at the AVR Waste Incinerator in Rozenburg (The Netherlands). The result will have a significant impact on improving the efficiency of the combustion processes of waste incineration and biomass combustion.
The combustion gases O2, CO and CO2 were measured together and gave a coherent picture of the situation at the level of the grate. Many industry laboratories and universities are lacking these data to validate their models in order to improve the comprehension of the combustion process.
The miniaturized Infra-Red sensor used to measure the combustion gases has to face extreme temperatures of up to 1400°C, for periods up to three hours. Furthermore, the electronic circuit has to stay around 25°C. Hence, several technical problems had to be solved during the process, for example the cooling of the gas entering the sensor.
IE involvement in the field of combustion monitoring started in 2002 when this activity was taken over from Sheffield University. The project has been carried out as a part of the FENCAB action of the JRC-IE, with the main objective to provide policy support related to integrated conversion processes for coal, biomass and waste.