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Rice Husk Research: From Environmental Pollutant to a Promising Source of Organo-Mineral Raw Materials
(Рисовая шелуха: от загрязнителя окружающей среды к перспективному источнику органо-минерального сырья)


by Baimakhan Satbaev, Svetlana Yefremova, Abdurassul Zharmenov, Askhat Kablanbekov, Sergey Yermishin, Nurgali Shalabaev, Arsen Satbaev and Vitaliy Khen

(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hybrid Materials for Environmental Application)


Rice husk is a large-tonnage waste left from rice production. It is not subject to humification and therefore becomes a serious environmental pollutant. Due to the presence of two essential elements-carbon and silicon-in its composition, rice husk is a promising organo-mineral raw material. The known methods for processing of rice husk are associated with the formation of even more aggressive waste. The creation of a waste-free technology for processing this plant material requires a detailed study. Rice husk of Kyzylorda oblast was studied using IR, SEM, TA, TPD-MS, EPR, and TEM methods. It was determined that under a temperature up to 500 °C, the ligno-carbohydrate component of rice husk decomposes almost completely. Three main peaks are recorded during the decomposition: hemicellulose at 200 °C, cellulose at 265 °C, and lignin at 350–360 °C. This process is endothermic. However, above of 300 °C the exothermic reactions associated with the formation of new substances and condensation processes in the solid residue begin to prevail. This explains the increase in the concentration of paramagnetic centers (PMCs) in products of rice husk carbonization in the range of up to 450 °C. Further increase in temperature leads to a decrease in the number of PMCs as a result of carbon graphite-like structures formation. The silicon–carbon product of rice husk carbonization (nanocomposite) is formed by interconnected nanoscale particles of carbon and silicon dioxide, the modification of which depends on the temperature of carbonization. The obtained data allow management of the rice husk utilization process while manufacturing products in demand based on ecofriendly technologies.

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