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Development of a practical and reliable ash melting test for biomass fuels, in particular for wood pellets (ASHMELT)
Start date: Jan 1, 2012, End date: Dec 31, 2014 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The utilisation of renewable energy sources is a considerable contribution to the EU 2020 targets, and the utilisation of solid biomass for heat production is of great relevance in this regard. The market for solid biofuels is growing rapidly, and the demand for raw materials is increasing. Consequently it is aimed at extending the raw material basis for biofuel production covering also wooden materials of lower quality as well as agricultural raw materials and residues, which often show unfavourable ash melting properties.The ash fusion test is the only standardised method currently available to assess the ash melting behaviour of solid biomass, but the significance of this test is frequently criticised, in particular the applicability for low-quality wood or non-wooden biomass. Thus a respective normative regulation has not been included in the EN 14961-2, which is considered a major drawback for future development of the high quality end consumer market for wood pellets.A number of alternative test methods have been developed to predict the ash melting properties of biomass fuels, but predictions and test results have scarcely been evaluated regarding their significance with regard to the practical performance of the fuels during combustion.The objectives of the AshMelT project are to- Develop a test method for the assessment of the ash melting characteristics of solid biofuels- Specify ash melting classes for solid biofuels- Work out a proposal for a European standard for the developed test method- Develop a proposal for the implementation of the developed procedure as a testing reference in the ENplus® wood pellets labelTo meet the above specified objectives laboratory experiments and combustion experiments are conducted by RTD institutions from all over Europe. Results are validated by external laboratories in a Round Robin test and by combustion tests conducted by RTD performers and boiler manufacturers.
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