Rafiziana Md.Kasmani, PhD
Head of Energy Engineering Department
Faculty of Chemical and Energy Engineering
Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
81310 UTM Skudai
Keynote Topic: Biogas application: Safety assessment as a transport fuel
Biogas is produced by the anaerobic digestion of domestic waste material, and it comprises principally of methane (60–70%) and carbon dioxide (40–30%) with trace levels of hydrogen sulfide (of order 1000–5000 ppm). The feedstock can be farm waste, energy crops, sewage and waste food, and the resulting biogas is used almost interchangeably with natural gas. The use of waste materials, that would otherwise decompose and produce greenhouse gases, is particularly beneficial. Biogas is used in spark ignited gas engines and dual fuel engines (often as part of a CHP system), burners, gas turbines and fuel cells.
Due to the presence of methane, biogas is a combustible gas. However, the carbon dioxide in biogas acts as a diluent and this reduces: the laminar burning velocity, the flame stability and the flammability range, all of which can have adverse effects on combustion system performance. Thus, its handling can cause fire and explosion hazards. These hazards can be found not only nearby waste discharges or digesters but also at remote distances because of lateral migration. Hence it is fundamental to know biogas explosivity characteristics in order to undertake adequate risk assessment and the importance of such data for the applications in engines and turbines.
In this presentation, the flame propagation behaviour and explosion characteristics of biogas will be discussed. Comparison with pure methane gas and hydrogen enrichment will be made to further analyse its chemical kinetics and burning characteristics. For enriching biogas with hydrogen, it is crucial to quantify physical and dynamics of explosion behaviour such as flame propagation, maximum pressure, maximum rate of pressure rise (i.e., deﬂagration index, KG) and burning velocity, which are among the most important parameters for the assessment of process hazards and the safe design of process equipment in such the potential of biogas becomes the greener fuel for transportation and heating purposes in future.
Rafiziana Md.Kasmani is a senior lecturer at the Department of Energy Engineering, Faculty of Chemical and Energy Engineering (FCEE), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM). Currently, she is the Head of Energy Engineering Department, at FCEE, UTM Born in Muar, Johor and had completed her PhD and Masters education in University of Leeds, UK, specializing in fire and explosion engineering. Received her BSc in Chemical Engineering from UTM in 2001. She has served on several international scientific committees, reviewer to Scopus and Elsevier journals, and also sit on the editorial board for Jurnal Teknologi, Malaysian Journal of Fundamental and Applied Sciences and currently as a technical editor for International of Renewable Energy, Nobel Science Publisher.
Known for her innovative, energetic and versatile personality, she is actively involved in researches and consultation on related field, focusing on protection and mitigation measures in process safety and detonation fundamental studies. Her area of research is in fire and explosion engineering with emphasis on developing a series of methodologies for classifying flame acceleration and potential to fire, deflagration and detonation hazard in distribution and transmission pipelines. Her recent interest on the biogas/methane/hydrogen as a transport fuel gives insight on potential, challenges and future of renewable energy as a potential clean energy. She has published widely in the special area of explosion hazard in process industries.
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