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How long does pyrolysis last in a biochar retort?  RSS feed

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Hi all,

I have made a post on here before about building a biochar retort and harvesting energy from it in the form of electricity. Thermoelectric generators appear to be the move, but in order to calculate how much energy is going to be provided from our retort, an estimate for how long the pyrolysis process will last. The plans are to use a 55-gallon drum as the pyrolysis chamber. The kiln will be well insulated and the energy will be harvested from the exhaust.

I was wondering if anyone on here had some experience with biochar retorts and would be able to offer me a rough estimate of how long I might be able to keep this kiln up to temperature. I'm a mechanical engineering student about to graduate in May and this is actually a part of my senior design project so any advice here would be great!

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Location: Wisconsin, zone 4
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I can give you a very rough estimate from my experience.  Depending on the type of wood you are using, 1.5 to 3 hrs.
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