Apr 20th, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM


Affordable Alternative Energy at the Community Level

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Owen McDougal


Biomass fuel briquettes offer an affordable, efficient, and renewable source of energy for home use. Shredded waste paper and biomaterials, which do not require the destruction of natural resources, serve as an excellent fuel source due to their availability, low cost, and favorable combustion properties. Chemical testing of briquettes for carcinogenic and hazardous emissions involves gaseous entrapment followed by soxlet extraction, gas chromatography separation, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) qualitative and quantitative analysis by mass spectrometry. Current studies are focused on optimizing the shape of the fuel briquettes to maximize heat output during combustion. The heat output of the briquettes is being compared to conventional fuel sources of fire wood, wood pellets, and charcoal. Initial findings suggest that the biobriquettes have a comparable energy output versus conventional fuel sources and they have the potential to be molded in such a way that they produce safe levels of gaseous emissions.