ISIJ International
Online ISSN : 1347-5460
Print ISSN : 0915-1559
ISSN-L : 0915-1559
Regular Article
Comparison of Hydrochar and Anthracite as Reducing Agents for Direct Reduction of Hematite
Yu-Chiao Lu Andrey Vladimirovich KarasevBjörn GlaserChuan Wang
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2024 Volume 64 Issue 6 Pages 978-987


The substitution of fossil coal with biocarbon in the metallurgical processes can help to decrease fossil CO2 emissions. Biocarbon’s characteristics, such as high volatile matter contents and high reactivities with CO2, are beneficial for increasing the reduction degrees and reduction rates of iron oxides in carbon composite agglomerates (CCA). This study compared the reduction of hematite by of two types of carbonaceous materials (CM): hydrochar (high-volatile biocarbon) and anthracite (a low-volatile coal) in the form of CCA. CM, hematite, and binder (starch) were mixed together to obtain mixtures with C/O molar ratios equal to 0.4–1.2. The mixtures were reduced non-isothermally in nitrogen atmosphere up to 1003 K or 1373 K. Up to 1003 K, the volatiles released from CMs and starch reduced hematite by 18–35%. Between 1003 K and 1373 K, both hydrochars (produced from lemon peels and rice husks) reacted with iron oxides more rapidly than anthracite below 1360 K, when the samples had C/O ratios in the range of 1.0–1.2. In this temperature range, rice husk hydrochar promoted a slower reaction with iron oxides than lemon peel hydrochar, which was possibly influenced by its higher ash content which decreased the rate of Boudouard reaction. Samples with C/O ≥ 1.0 achieved complete reduction at 1373 K, regardless of the type of CM used, whereas samples with C/O equal to 0.4–0.5 achieved 63–86% reduction. It can be concluded from this study that hydrochar can fully substitute anthracite for direct reduction of iron oxide to decrease fossil CO2 emissions during ironmaking processes.

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© 2024 The Iron and Steel Institute of Japan.

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