Studying the Effect of Pyrolysis Gas Composition on the Gasification Syngas Composition using CPFD Simulation


  • Ahmad Dawod
  • Britt M. E. Moldestad
  • Hildegunn H. Haugen
  • Janitha C. Bandara



pyrolysis, biomass gasification, CPFD


A CPFD model for biomass gasification in a bubbling fluidized bed was developed using the Barracuda Virtual Reactor 17.4.1 commercial CFD code. Three simulation cases were performed at varying the reactor temperature and pyrolysis gas compositions. The effect of the pyrolysis step was found to be significant, especially on the production of CO, H2, and CH4. This is mainly because that the pyrolysis step converts 85% of the biomass weight into volatiles. Comparing the simulation results with the experimental data showed a good agreement on predicting CH4 and H2, whereas CO2 was overestimated, and CO was underestimated. This might be due to inaccuracies in the pyrolysis gas composition or high rates in the water-gas-shift reaction used in the simulation. The effects of temperature on the synthesis gas composition were further investigated. Increasing the temperature from 800°C to 900°C, increased the concentration of CO and H2 by 2.4% and 1.6% respectively, while decreased the concentration of CO2 and CH4 by 1.3% and 0.5%, respectively. The trends of gas compositions showed a good agreement with other literature data, except the trend of CH4. This might be due to the neglect of tar composition in the volatiles.


Alternativ Energy Tutorials. Biomass Resources. Retrieved 03 2021, from

J.P. Badeau, A. Levi. Biomass Gasification: Chemistry, Processes and Applications. New York: Nova Science Publishers. 2009.

J. Bandara. Simulation and parameter optimization of fluidized-bed and biomass gasification. University of South-Eastern Norway, 2021.

P. Basu. Biomass Gasification, Pyrolysis and Torrefaction (2nd ed.). Elsevier, 2013.

CPFD Software. Complements Other Tools, 2021. Retrieved from

CPFD Software Realeases Barracuda Virtual Reactor 17.4. (CPFD Software LLC) Retrieved 05.03.2021:

E. Desroches-Ducarne, J. C.Dolignier, E. Marty, G. Martin, L. Delfosse. Modeling of gaseous pollutants emissions in circulating fluidized bed combustion of municipal refuse. Fuel, 77(13): 1399-1410, 1998.

C. Ellis. World Bank: Global waste generation could increase by 70% by 2050. World Bank: Global waste generation could increase 70% by 2050 | Waste Dive, Industry Dive 2018.

L. Fagbemi, L. Khezami, R. Capart. Pyrolysis products from different biomasses: application to the thermal cracking of tar. Applied Energy, 69(4), 293-306, 2001.

A. Gomez-Barea, B. Leckner. Modeling of biomass gasification in fluidized bed. Progress in Energy and Combustion Science, 36(4): 444-509, 2010.

H. B. Goyal, D. Seal, R. C. Saxena. Bio-fuel from thermochemical conversion of renewable resources: A review. Elsevier, 12(2): 504-517, 2008.

M. T. Ismail, A. Ramos, M. A. El-Salam, E. Monteiro, A. Rouboa. Plasma fixed bed gasification using a Eulerian model. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 44(54): 28668-28684, 2019.

R. Jaiswal, R. Computational modeling and experimental studies on fluidized bed regimes. University of South-Eastern Norway, 2018.

S. Kaza, L. Yaw, P. Bhada-Tata, F. V. Woerden. What a Waste. Washington: International Bank for Reconstruction and development. 2018.

U. Kumar, M. C. Paul. CFD modeling of biomass gasification with a volatile break-up approach. Chemical Engineering Science, 195: 413-422, 2019, doi: j.ces.2018.09.038

Z. Luo, J. Zhou. Thermal Conversion of Biomass. Handbook of Climate Change Mitigation: pp. 1001-1042. New York: Springer, 2012.

A. Monilo, S. Chianese, D. Musmarra. Biomass gasification technology: The state of the art overview. Journal of Energy Chemistry, 25(1): 10-25, 2016.

C. K. Perera, Optimization of biomass gasification reactor. Telemark University College, 2013.

R. Radmanesh, J. Chaouki, C. Guy. Biomass gasification in a bubbling fluidized bed reactor: Experiments and modeling. AIChE Journal, 52(12): 4258-4272, 2006. doi:

L. Rosendahl. Biomass Combustion Science, Technology and Engineering. Sawston: Woodhead Publishing Limited, 2013.

L. Santamaria, M. Beirow, F. Mangold, G. Lopez, M. Olazar, M. Schmid, G. Scheffknecht. Influence of temperature on products from fluidized bed pyrolysis of wood and solid recovered fuel. Fuel, 283, 2021.

K. Sun. Optimization of biomass gasification reactor using Aspen Plus. Telemark University College. 2014.