Fabrication of spherical biochar by a two-step thermal process from waste potato peel

Xiao Yang, Eilhann E. Kwon, Xiaomin Dou, Ming Zhang, Ki Hyun Kim, Daniel C.W. Tsang, Yong Sik Ok

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to develop a new approach for the preparation of spherical biochar (SBC) by employing a two-step thermal technology to potato peel waste (PPW). Potato starch (PS), as a carbon-rich material with microscale spherical shape, was separated from PPW as a precursor to synthesizing SBC. The synthesis process comprised (1) pre-oxidization (preheating under air) of PS at 220 °C and (2) subsequent pyrolysis of the pretreated sample at 700 °C. Results showed that the produced SBC successfully retained the original PS morphology and that pre-oxidization was the key for its shape maintenance, as it reduced surface tension and enhanced structural stability. The SBC possessed excellent chemical inertness (high aromaticity) and uniform particle size (10–30 μm). Zero-cost waste material with a facile and easy-to-control process allows the method to be readily scalable for industrialization, while offering a new perspective on the full use of PPW.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)478-485
Number of pages8
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018


  • Green chemistry
  • Material science
  • Spherical biochar
  • Thermochemistry
  • Waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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