What is the difference between pyrolysis and gasification?
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What is the difference between pyrolysis and gasification?


What is pyrolysis?

The chemical breakdown of organic compounds at high temperatures without oxygen is known as pyrolysis. The procedure often takes place at pressures and temperatures above 430 °C (800 °F). It is an irreversible process that involves modifications to both the physical phase and chemical composition.


Organic materials are frequently transformed into solid wastes comprising ash and carbon, minor amounts of liquids, and gases through the process of pyrolysis. On the other side, carbon is produced as a residue during extreme pyrolysis, which is known as carbonation. Pyrolysis doesn’t involve interactions with water, oxygen, or other reagents, in contrast to other high temperature processes like hydrolysis and combustion. However, a little amount of oxidation will always take place in any pyrolysis system because it is almost impossible to create an oxygen-free atmosphere.


What is gasification?

Gasification is an advanced heat treatment technique characterized by partial oxidation of the feedstock. Oxygen is added, but the amount of oxygen is not sufficient to fully oxidize the material and complete combustion occurs. Partial combustion produces a “syngas” that can be used as a substitute for natural gas, chemicals, fertilizers, transportation fuels and hydrogen.


The gasification of solid materials is not a new concept – gasification first occurred in the late 1700s and early 1800s to produce tar. The type of gasification technology in use today has been developed largely over the past 20 years. It has been widely used to make fuels such as city gas or producer gas, which is a combustible gas produced by gasification of coke in the presence of air and steam.


What is the difference between pyrolysis and gasification?

Pyrolysis is the heat conversion of organic material in the absence of oxygen while using a catalyst. Gasification, a thermochemical process, transforms biomass into a producer gas, a combustible gas (syngas). Pyrolysis and gasification differ primarily in that gasification occurs in the presence of air while gasification occurs in the absence of air. In addition, while gasification produces heat and combustible gases, pyrolysis produces heat, combustible liquids, and combustible gases. So, this is how pyrolysis and gasification vary from one another.


Additionally, pyrolysis can be utilized in the manufacture of food, such as caramelization, biomass fuel production, the creation of ethylene, the treatment of plastic waste, etc., whereas gasification can be used in the production of heat, power, and other things.