technology application

Biochar

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updatedOct 14, 2021
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A high-carbon form of charcoal used mostly as soil amendment.
A high-carbon form of charcoal used mostly as soil amendment.

A high-carbon form of charcoal used mostly as soil amendment. By heating organic matter at extremely high temperatures and in the absence of oxygen (preventing combustion), a mixture of solids (the biochar proper), liquid (bio-oil), and gas (syngas) products are produced. Biochar can sequester carbon in the soil for hundreds to thousands of years. Simultaneously, its presence in the earth can improve water quality, increase soil fertility, raise agricultural productivity, and reduce pressure on old-growth forests. Equipment for making biochar can be as simple as a primitive campfire or as complex as a modern bio-refinery. The basic process is called pyrolysis.

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