Conventional methods for biomass gasification to hydrogen and synthesis gas were carried out at high temperature (1073-1673 K). Recently Rh/CeO2/SiO2 catalyst has been shown to be very effective to the catalytic gasification of biomass at low reaction temperatures. The catalytic performance of the Rh/CeO2/SiO2 catalyst for the pyrogasification of cedar wood biomass was compared with that of a commercial steam reforming Ni catalyst. The Ni catalyst allowed the gasification of tar but not coke during the pyrogasification at 873-1023 K. in contrast, Rh/CeO2/SiO2 gasified part of the coke as well as tar. Testing of these catalysts for steam and CO2 reforming of biomass found that steam reforming proceeded more easily than CO2 reforming of methane over both catalysts.
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