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Briquetting of rattan furniture waste

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This paper presents the findings of a study involving experimental production of briquettes from chopped rattan strands mixed with cassava starch paste. Samples of rattan strands of mixed species (Laccosperma secundiforum and Eresmopatha macrocarpa) were collected from a furniture workshop in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria. The strands, having an average moisture content of 12% and an average dimension of 630 mm (length) by 4.0 mm (width) and 1.8 mm (thickness), were reduced to 25 mm (length) by 4.0 mm (width) and 1.8 mm (thickness) particles by manual shearing. They were subsequently mixed with cassava starch at six proportions by weight, i.e. 50%, 100%, 150%, 200%, 250%, and 300%. It was observed that the minimum proportion by weight of cassava starch required for briquette formation was 200%. Compression experiments were performed using a simple tabletop closed - end die piston press fitted with both a pressure and a dial gauge. Four levels of pressure application: 3.5 N/mm2, 7.0 N/mm2, 10 N/mm2 and 14 N/mm2, and two loading duration (dwell times), 3 min and 5 min, respectively were employed. Results obtained showed that the minimum pressure required for briquette formation was 14 MPa. The specific energy required to form the rattan strand briquettes at 200%, 250% and 300% cassava starch content levels was 8 J/t, 9.3 J/t and 11.1 J/t, respectively. A reciprocal relationship between binder content and relaxed density was observed. All the expansion (minimal in all cases) of the briquettes took place within 30 min. It was concluded that stable briquettes could be formed from rattan strands mixed with cassava starch paste.


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