To cite this article: Anis, S. et al. (2018). Thermal characteristics of microwave reactor for pyrolysis of food waste. J. Phys. Sci., 29(Supp. 2), 1–13, https://doi.org/10.21315/jps2018.29.s2.1
Food waste generated from restaurants or food stalls needs to be processed correctly to minimise environmental pollution problems. One of the promising methods is pyrolysis process using low-power microwave energy reactor that can convert it into bio-oil. This process is strongly associated with the thermal heating process in a microwave reactor normally indicated by the reaction temperature, heating rate and the thermal efficiency. This work studies the thermal characteristics of microwave reactor during pyrolysis of food waste. A modified domestic microwave oven with a maximum output power of 418 W was used as the experimental reactor in this study. The samples with different moisture content (MC) of 11% and 24% were examined under various microwave power of 257 W, 362 W and 418 W for 1 h. The results showed that the thermal characteristics of microwave were influenced by the microwave powers and moisture contents of the food waste. High microwave power and low MC provide high reaction temperature, heating rate and thermal efficiency. Under investigated conditions, the optimum result was obtained at microwave power of 418 W and MC of 11% in which final temperature, heating rate and thermal efficiency of the pyrolysis process were 757°C, 12.1°C min–1 and 53%, respectively. These results indicated that the modified microwave reactor is capable for pyrolysis of food waste even at relatively low microwave power.