Combustion of waste derived fuels in fluidized bed boilers may result in fly ashes containing increased amounts of lead and zinc, besides the common alkali and alkaline earth metal compounds. Although the absolute concentrations of lead and zinc may be relatively low, around 1%, in the bulk ash, they may induce unwanted effects in combustors, partly due to their significant enrichment in the fly ash. First, lead and zinc in fly ashes may lead to unwanted heavy metal emissions. Further, they can also alter the behavior of the fly ash and cause it to become sticky and possibly corrosive. This paper discusses the mechanism of volatilization of lead and zinc and stickiness properties of their fly ash compounds under different conditions, based on data from a FBC gasifier using waste fuels with significant amounts of lead and zinc. Advanced thermochemical calculations using the data bases developed at A˚bo Akademi show that both lead and zinc can form volatile compounds and thus be strongly enriched in the fly ash. They can be volatilized as elemental gases, Pb(g) and Zn(g), or they can form gaseous chlorides, PbCl2(g) and ZnCl2(g). But they can also form non-volatile oxides. Thus their behavior is very dependent on the combustion conditions, particularly on the availability of chlorine. This way there is also a direct coupling of the volatilization behavior of lead and zinc with the chemistry of the alkali metals and calcium, all of which govern the availability of chlorine. Simplified thermochemical diagrams are shown to explain the complex interaction of the lead and zinc chemistry with the rest of the flue gas and fly ash chemistry. The thermochemical data can be used to explain the practical results from full scale boilers.

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