This paper shows how chemical sludge (CS) generated during wastewater treatment at a paperboard mill can be quickly dried at low-temperature and employed in bark-fired boilers to reduce slagging and corrosion problems. By using a cyclone-dryer operated at an inlet-air velocity of 110 m/s and a temperature of 90 °C, the dry-matter content of CS was increased from approximately 19 to 82%. The residence time of CS inside the cyclone was approximately 2 s when using the inlet-air velocity mentioned above. Disaggregation of the feedstock caused by collisions with the cyclone wall and between particles played a crucial role in enhancing the efficiency of heat and mass transfer. Three co-pelletized mixtures of Scots pine bark (SPB) and dried-CS were combusted in a 40 kW fixed-bed burner. Flue gas analysis was performed with a gas analyser. Coarse and fine ash were analysed by SEM-EDS and XRD. NOx and SO2 emissions increased with increasing amount of CS in the mixtures. Mono-combustion of SPB resulted in a large quantity of slag (i.e., molten ash) with a high degree of sintering (i.e., hardness of the slag), and ash deposits formed on heat transfer surfaces were rich in K2SO4 and KCl. Mixtures of SPB and CS were less prone to slagging, and the amount of alkali chloride in the deposits was reduced in favour of alkali sulphate formation.
- Pulp and paper mill sludge