Increased Flexibility of A Fixed-Bed Biomass Gasifier through Advanced Control

Clemens Hollenstein, Christopher Zemann, Stefan Martini, Markus Gölles, Wolfgang Felsberger, Martin Horn

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paper


Most industrial fixed-bed biomass gasification systems usually operate at steady-state to produce the maximum amount of energy possible although they can principally modulate their loads to compensate for the fluctuations of other volatile renewable energy systems. To unleash their full load modulation capability, their typically traditional control strategies should be improved, their gas residence times affected by typically basic char removal strategies adjusted and any required manual interaction of an operator avoided. In this respect, a new controller for the char handling (accumulation and removal) of the reduction zone in a fixed-bed biomass gasifier of a representative industrial small-scale gasification system is developed and experimentally verified. This new controller consists of a recursive least-squares estimator for the flow resistance of the gasifier representing the amount of char inside and a switching controller for rotating a grate located at its bottom. The experimental verification reveals that only the traditional (pressure-based) controller requires manual adjustment of the thresholds. Moreover, the new controller (flow resistance based) significantly reduces the fluctuation range during partial load and stabilizes the temperature and pressure downstream the gasifier. This provides the basis for enhancing its fuel flexibility too and is an important feature for flexible operation in future.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEuropean Biomass Conference and Exhibition Proceedings
Publication statusPublished - 11 May 2022
Event30th European Biomass Conference & Exhibition: EUBCE 2022 - Virtuell, Unknown
Duration: 9 May 202212 May 2022


Conference30th European Biomass Conference & Exhibition
Abbreviated titleEUBCE 2022


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