UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Pelletization of Refuse-Derived Fuel with Varying Compositions of Plastic, Paper, Organic and Wood Rezaei, Hamid; Yazdan Panah, Fahimeh; Lim, C. Jim; Sokhansanj, Shahab


The combustible fraction of municipal solid waste (MSW) is called refuse-derived fuel (RDF). RDF is a blend of heterogeneous materials and thus its handling is challenging. Pelletization is an efficient treatment to minimize the heterogeneity. In this research, typical RDF compositions were prepared by mixing several mass fractions of paper, plastic, household organic and wood. The collected compositions were ground, wetted to 20% moisture content (wet basis) and pelletized. Increasing the plastic content from 20% to 40% reduced the pelletization energy but increased the pellet’s calorific value. Pellets with higher plastic content generated more dust when exposed to shaking. Making durable pellets with 40% plastic content needed an increase in die temperature from 80 °C to 100 °C. Increasing the paper content from 30% to 50% increased the durability but consumed higher energy to form pellets. Paper particles increased the friction between pellet’s surface and die wall as was evident from expulsion energy. Force versus displacement curve for material compression revealed that the RDF compositions have rigid material characteristics.

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