Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 36, pp 36581–36588 | Cite as

Sludge char-to-fuel approaches based on the catalytic pyrolysis II: heat release

  • Jinyi QinEmail author
  • Yijing Jiao
  • Xiaoguang Li
  • Yunxiao Liu
  • Yali Lei
  • Junfa Gao
Research Article


The pyrolyzed sludge is concerned currently, while the produced higher heating value (HHV) is unclear yet. In this work, the effects of moisture content (MC), catalysts amount, and catalytic types on the HHV production were investigated. Based on the known fatty acids (FAs) and alcohol content, the heat release by catalytic and non-catalytic pyrolysis product was examined. A good correlation between the measured and calculated HHV in non-catalytic pyrolysis indicates that the method can effectively evaluate the pyrolysis effect. The results show that a higher HHV can be obtained by adding a catalyst when the MC was between 20 and 40% compared to the non-catalytic pyrolysis. In the catalytic pyrolysis, the maximum HHV produced by bentonite is 50.61 MJ kg−1. Bentonite can rapidly initiate the decarboxylation but sand was a potential efficient catalyst because of the enrichment of large amounts of FAs C16:0. If sand is used in combination with bentonite, C16:0 may be enriched and further decarboxylated, eventually releasing more heat. Since sand is composed of SiO2 and Al2O3, in the production of HHV, the addition of Al2O3 has a better catalytic effect than adding SiO2. For the evaluation of catalytic pyrolysis products and HHV, it is proposed that the possibility of adding two types of catalysts for pyrolysis is of great significance for realizing sludge to the fuel.


HHV Fatty acids Moisture content Catalytic pyrolysis Bentonite Sand 


Funding information

This work was financially supported by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (Grant No.310828171001) and Natural Science Foundation of ShaanXi Province of China (Grant No.2017JQ5118) and Construction Technology Demonstration Project of Xi’an (Grant No. SJW2017–12).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11356_2018_3596_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.2 mb)
ESM 1 (PDF 1199 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jinyi Qin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yijing Jiao
    • 1
  • Xiaoguang Li
    • 1
  • Yunxiao Liu
    • 1
  • Yali Lei
    • 2
  • Junfa Gao
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Civil EngineeringChang’an UniversityXi’anPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.College of Urban and Environmental ScienceNorthwest UniversityXi’anPeople’s Republic of China

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