Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Civil and Environmental Engineering


Engineering, Civil.


Henshaw, P.




As the number of landfills for municipal solid waste (MSW) in North America decreases, the combustion of MSW may become an increasingly important and more widely used component of day to day waste management practices. If this occurs, the problem of dealing with the formation of nitrogen oxides (NO x) at municipal waste combustors will have to be dealt with, and little published research on the fundamentals of NOx formation in MSW combustors is available. In this research, pyrolysis experiments were performed by heating soy flour in a stainless steel reactor while flushing the reactor with argon gas. The known products HCN, NH3 and NOx were quantified in order to determine the fate of nitrogen in the fuel. This experiment is analogous to the first stage of a staged combustion system burning foodwaste, a major nitrogen-containing component of municipal solid waste. The NO production observed in this research was derived from N and O contained in the fuel. Along with NOx, HCN, and NH3, volatile tar was found to be a major nitrogen-containing product of pyrolysis. The following distribution of fuel-N was found in the experiments after pyrolysis: 1.83% as NO, 1.78% as HCN, 29.1% as NH3, 21.9% as tar, 22.3% as char and 23.1% unknown. The following partitioning of the volatilized N was observed: 2.32% as NO, 2.31% as HCN, 37.9% as NH3, 28.2% as tar and 29.3% unknown. The unknown nitrogen in both cases is probably in the form of N2.Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis2000 .R68. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 39-02, page: 0554. Adviser: Paul Henshaw. Thesis (M.A.Sc.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 2000.