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Research Project: Developing Technologies that Enable Growth and Profitability in the Commercial Conversion of Sugarcane, Sweet Sorghum, and Energy Beets into Sugar, Advanced Biofuels, and Bioproducts

Location: Commodity Utilization Research

Title: Biochar production technology: An overview

item Uchimiya, Sophie

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/24/2015
Publication Date: 10/6/2015
Citation: Uchimiya, M. (2015) Biochar production technology: An overview. In: Ok, Y. S., Uchimiya, M., Chang, S., and Bolan, N., editors. BIOCHAR: Production, Characterization and Applications. London:Taylor & Frances. p. 45-66.

Interpretive Summary: Biochar has received worldwide interests in the past years, because it encompasses high priority research areas including bioenergy production, global warming mitigation, and sustainable agriculture. This book will provide fundamentals of biochar such as its concept, production technology and characterization methods with comprehensive examples for readers. This book will also include state-of-art biochar application technology in the field of agronomy and environmental sciences with step-by-step case studies.

Technical Abstract: Char(coal) and the broader term black carbon (that includes soot) has long been recognized as a normal environmental (including soil) constituent resulting from fire and industrial activities. Charcoal carbon can naturally make up as much as 35% of total organic carbon in U.S. agricultural soils. This chapter will provide an overview of biochar production technology with a particular emphasis on different structural components of biochar: labile and recalcitrant carbon and ash. Discussions will focus on (1) feedstock heterogeneity and operational variables that pose challenges for farmers to produce biochars having a consistent quality and (2) specific local needs of producers, e.g., scale of operation, available biomass, soil type, and local climate. Recommendations will be given on localized, site-specific, case-by-case biochar utilization based on the purpose of biochar application appropriate for the soil property, locally availability feedstock, and socioeconomic situations.