Currently around 35% of the world’s population uses biomass as a source of energy for heating needs. This happens because there are still many remote areas that have not been reached by the electricity, fuel oil and also gas. Besides, the price of gasoline and gas also continue to increase making people’s purchasing power becomes reduced and prefer to use alternative fuel especially biomass.
This amount will increase again by the year 2030 where almost half of the human population will use biomass as energy source 1, and each family will need 2 tons of timber per year for cooking and heating purposes 2. This will have an impact on the magnitude of the need for biomass-based fuels, especially solid wood fuels that can easily be obtained primarily by exploiting forests.
Biomass is usually burned directly to get heat energy, but this will greatly affect the human environment for a long time. Carbon dioxide (CO2) as a result of the combustion reaction will be released into the atmosphere and can disrupt the human respiratory system. Sometimes carbon monoxide (CO) is also formed by an imperfect combustion process and CO is also one of the most radical types of air pollutants that can lead to death in large numbers 3.
Until now, biomass burning technology using stove (stove) continues to grow. The combustion furnace was designed, modified and tested to obtain the expected performance at least closer to the performance of the furnace using LPG or kerosene as fuel. However, since the combustion reaction is not stoichiometric, where excess air is supplied to the furnace will produce a high temperature (950 – 1100) 0C. High temperatures will trigger the reaction of the formation of nitrogen oxide pollutants, where nitrogen in the air reacts with oxygen to form carbon monoxide (NO), or carbon dioxide (CO2). Besides causing pollution, fine particles, unburnt carbon will also form and release into free air with combustion gases.
Not only in the use of primary / fossil fuel sources, the use of energy sources from biomass also causes negative impacts on the environment (global impact warming), especially air pollution around the indoor air pollution that can cause respiratory infections, . Not only in the country, abroad also experience the same problem that residents who use biomass fuel experience problems in breathing.
Direct combustion combustion generates emissions gases and also smoke that is bad for the environment. Until now the atmospheric temperature has increased and sometimes the weather is very bad. Some references say that the impact of burning of primary fuel and also biomass is closely related to world climate change. Another problem arising from the use of biomass as a fuel directly by combustion is to produce unburned carbon particles. In industrial areas we often see and feel the unhealthy air condition and even often seen a real black cloud is a fine partkel of fuel combustion. In such a large number that such circumstances will disturb the view, especially on air traffic, this will be very bad.
This study focused on evaluating the performance or efficiency of some biomass furnaces using coconut shell fuels. Specific objectives to be achieved are to obtain the type of furnace and the appropriate operational parameters and have performance (heat efficiency, specific fuel usage, and low pollution) in converting coconut shell fuel energy into heat energy.
Expected from the results of this study, a prototype biomass fuel furnace, especially coconut shell will be obtained with high performance capabilities. This prototype will be useful as a medium of learning in energy conversion courses related to heat energy, especially Fuel and Lubrication courses. Additional output of this research is a scientific article and will be published in accredited national journals and expected to be published in reputable international journals.