ISSN: 1659-2751



Determination of the Key Parameters for the Elaboration of Biochar with a High Cation Exchange Capacity


This project was conducted to identify protocols which lead to the production of biochar with a high cation exchange capacity (CEC), more than 100 cmol(+)/kg. The study was divided into three main stages. The first one compared the effect of three organic materials (rice husks, bamboo, and coconut fiber) at three temperatures (300 °C, 500 °C and 800 °C) during a pyrolysis of 1 h, 3 h, and 5 h. The CEC of the biochar produced was evaluated. In the second stage of the study, the effect of decomposition of the coconut fiber on the CEC of the biochar was studied. Finally, in the last stage, the utilization of H2SO4 and KOH was evaluated at room temperature and at 300 °C during one hour, to activate and elevate the CEC of the biochar. The results indicated that the coconut fiber and the 300 °C treatment produced significantly higher CEC values than the other materials and processes (p≤0.05). It was also identified that a greater decomposition stage of the coconut fiber resulted in higher CEC values. Furthermore, it was found that the H2SO4 at 300 °C treatment yielded CEC values up to 252 cmol(+)/kg.

Key words: activation, biochar, CEC, decomposition, organic material, temperature, time.

Artículo en español (pdf) (1008)