Grades of RDF

Different grades of RDF can be produced from MSW. Generally the higher the fuel quality, the lower the fuel yield. For example, an RDF plant in Albany, New York, simply shreds the incoming waste and passes the shredded material across a magnetic separator to remove the ferrous component. The fuel yield is roughly 95%, while the average Btu value of this fuel is similar to raw MSW. Conversely, producing a pellet fuel requires much preprocessing. A field yield of about 50%, based on the total incoming waste, can be achieved and has a heating value which approximates 6500 to 7000 Btu/lb.

Industry-wide specifications for RDF do not exist, but RDF has been classified according to the type and degree of processing and the form of fuel produced (see Table 10.8.1). The properties of RDF to consider and incorporate into supply contracts include the proximate analysis (moisture content, ash content, volatiles, and fixed carbon); ultimate analysis (C, H, N, O, S, and ash percentage); higher heating value (HHV); and content of chlorine, fluorine, lead, cadmium, and mercury.

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