BIO-CHAR III: Production, Characterization and Applications

Tomar, Portugal

September 17-21, 2023
Tomar, Portugal

Franco Berruti (Western University, Canada) 
David Chiaramonti (Politecnico di Torino and RE-CORD, Italy)
Silvia Fiore (Politecnico di Torino, Italy)
Manuel Garcia-Perez (Washington State University, USA)
Ondrej Masek (University of Edinburgh, UK)

About This Conference

This proposed Conference is the third of the series, following the very successful Bio-Char I (Alba, Italy, 2017) and Bio-Char II (Cetraro, Italy, 2019).

When organic materials (woody or agricultural materials, organic residues, sewage sludge, digestate,…) are thermally decomposed in the absence of oxygen, one of the resulting products is bio-char, a solid compound rich in carbon and inorganic elements. Incorporated into the ground, bio-char is a porous soil enhancer that can lock up carbon, supply minerals, prevent nutrients leaching and water contamination and retain soil moisture. As a result, bio-char can be used as an efficient material to enhance soil properties while sequestering carbon. However, bio-char’s porous properties make it also suitable for a variety of value-added applications (adsorption of pollutants, filler for composites, catalysts, material for electronic applications, ….). Bio-char properties depend on the biomass feedstock used as well as the operating conditions used for its production.  Moreover, they can be manipulated by pre- and post-processing. By understanding and controlling these factors it is possible to create value-added “designer bio-chars” for specific applications.  

The interest in bio-char has been booming all over the world.  A number of companies have jumped into production and the user community is looking for carbon-negative applications.  As a result, it is imperative to review the existing knowledge as well as to stimulate research and development activities to bring clarity to this field, ranging from feedstock selection and properties, to production and upgrading processes, from identification of applications to economics, from characterization to products standardization and policies and carbon dioxide offset credits.

The conference aims to create a forum where the current knowledge as well as the future directions are openly reviewed and discussed.

Conference Organization

Franco Berruti (Western University, London, Ontario, Canada)
David Chiaramonti (Politecnico di Torino, Italy)
Silvia Fiore (Politecnico di Torino, Italy)
Manuel Garcia-Perez (Washington State University, USA)
Ondrej Masek (University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK)

Main Themes and Proposed Sections

  • History and log-term performance of bio-char: what can we learn from the past? Long-term monitored field studies
  • Sustainable feedstocks for bio-char production: characterization, pre-processing and suitability/response to thermal processing
  • Bio-char production processes: from torrefaction, slow and fast pyrolysis, gasification and hydrothermal processing
  • Bio-char characterization: relationships among feedstock, production technology and characteristics
  • Bio-char reactor technologies
  • Co-products of biochar production: a biorefinery approach
  • Bio-char physical and chemical post-processing (grinding, functionalization, activation
  • Bio-char applications: soil amendments, adsorbents, catalysts, fillers for composites, electronic applications
  • Bio-char handling, storage, markets and commercialization
  • Bio-char use sequences: integration of value chains in agricultural models and forestry
  • Bio-char policies, regulations, standardization, and carbon offsets credits
  • Case studies: success stories, failures, and lessons learned
  • Biochar and climate change

Format

As is typical of ECI conferences, there will be no parallel sessions in order to allow all participants to be exposed and contribute to all presentations. Apart from 4 plenary lectures of 30 minutes each, the regular contributions will consist of short oral presentations (10~12 minutes plus 2 minutes for change of speaker). Each presentation, however, will also be accompanies by a poster, to be presented normally during the social hour after dinner. The poster session will allow ample time for questions and answers and informal discussion between presenter and interested participants. Additional free-forum poster presentations will also be invited. 

Networking time will be featured during each afternoon. This will allow participants to engage in informal discussions and to spend time together enjoying the many beautiful outdoors activities available in the region.

Submission of Abstracts

Original papers for presentations at the above listed sessions are invited. If you wish to be considered for an oral or poster presentation, please submit a one-page abstract.  All abstracts will be reviewed by the session chairs. 

Deadlines

Abstracts for oral presentation: March 1, 2023
Abstract reviews: March, April and May 2023

Abstracts for poster presentations: March 1, 2023
Final Program: June 1, 2023

Call for Free-Forum posters: Ongoing until August 31, 2023

Please prepared your abstract according to this template: docx or doc.

All abstracts should be submitted electronically and submissions must follow the template provided at This Link.

Abstracts of all presentations will be made available to conference participants prior to the start of the conference.

Graduate students and young investigators are particularly encouraged to present posters. An evening poster session will be an integral part of the conference. If an abstract has multiple authors, each of whom wishes an invitation to attend the conference, each author must submit a separate application.

Venue Information

Tomar, Portugal

Situated in the geographic center of Portugal, Tomar (about 135 km northeast of Lisbon) was founded by the notorious Knights Templar in 1160. The Templars were part monks, part warriors and plotted crusades from Tomar for centuries. They established the beginnings of the Convento de Cristo, Tomar’s most famous landmark, on a hill overlooking town. The Convento combines architectural styles from the 12th through 17th centuries. An ornate octagonal canopy protects the high altar of the Templo dos Templares, modeled after the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and the grounds of the convent contain eight cloisters embracing a variety of styles.

Tomar, Portugal

The Templars earned a reputation as ferocious fighters, and won the admiration and trust of both rich and poor. They served as protectors and transporters of Christian kings, power brokers and pilgrims and grew famous as bankers. The Templars acquired great wealth, but made many enemies in the process. Pope Clement V accepted accusations of heresy, blasphemy and sacrilege leveled against the Templars by Philip the Fair, king of France, and many Templars were imprisoned or executed. King Dinis of Portugal allowed them to regroup their forces under the new aegis of the Order of Christ. Prince Henry the Navigator became Administrator after the Templars became the Order of Christ and he used much their wealth to finance his explorations.

Tomar is divided by the River Nabão, the banks of which are dotted with weirs and wheels once used to water vegetable gardens and orchards. The irrigation techniques illustrate the Muslim tradition of hydraulic engineering. Most sights, accommodations and shops lie on the west bank of the river and the lush Parque Mouchão straddles the two banks. The ancient yet functional Ponte Velha (Old Bridge) connects the two. Tomar’s main shopping thoroughfare is rua Serpa Pinto, known locally as Corre Doura. Outlets for folklore, pottery, copperware and wrought iron highlight it. Tascas and bars are scattered throughout the city, with some offering live music.

Hotel dos Templários

Situated near the heart of Tomar’s Old Town, the Hotel dos Templários is the largest hotel in the district. Many rooms offer views of the Convent of Christ and the public areas, including lounges and terrace-view dining rooms, are spacious. The hotel offers room service, laundry, a barbershop, a beauty parlor, a billiards room and baby-sitting. There are wide sun terraces, indoor and outdoor pools, a tennis court and a greenhouse. The hotel also has large gardens. Rooms have air conditioning, private bathrooms, televisions and minibars. Free parking is available. 

Tomar Hotel

For more information on the area, please visit these web sites:

http://www.golisbon.com/portugal/cities/tomar.html

http://www.sacred-destinations.com/portugal/tomar.htm

www.ezportugal.com/tomar-portugal

Transportation to Tomar from Lisbon

By train from Lisbon:

The trip from Lisbon to Tomar takes approximately 1½ hours. Upon arrival at the Tomar train station, taxis are available for the short (about one or two kilometer)r trip to the Hotel Dos Templarios.

By automobile from Lisbon:

The rental car companies will provide maps and driving instructions. Allow between 1-1/2 – 2 hours for the trip, depending on traffic. The hotel provides free parking.

More detailed information will be available when registration opens.

General Information About ECI

Engineering Conferences International (ECI) is a not-for-profit, global engineering conferences program, originally established in 1962 that provides opportunities for the exploration of problems and issues of concern to engineers and scientists from many disciplines.

The format of the conference provides morning and late afternoon or evening sessions in which major presentations are made. Poster sessions will be scheduled for evening discussion as well. Available time is included during the afternoons for ad hoc meetings, informal discussions, and/or recreation. This format is designed to enhance rapport among participants and promote dialogue on the development of the meeting. We believe the conferences have been instrumental in generating ideas and disseminating information to a greater extent than is possible through more conventional forums.

All participants are expected both to attend the entire conference and to contribute actively to the discussions. The recording/photographing of lectures and presentations is forbidden. As ECI conferences take place in an informal atmosphere, casual clothing is the usual attire.

Smoking is prohibited at ECI conferences and conference functions.

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