In the present study the gypsum (CaSO4·2H2O) quality at three full-scale wet flue gas desulphurisation (FGD) plants and a pilot plant were examined and compared. Gypsum quality can be expressed in terms of moisture content (particle size and morphology dependent) and the concentration of residual limestone and other impurities. The particle size distributions (PSD) in the holding tanks of the investigated plants were similar, apart from a slightly higher fraction of small particles in the full-scale plants. These high levels of small particles could originate from nucleation, attrition or accumulation of fly ash and impurities from the sorbent. The crystal morphology obtained in the pilot plant was columnar with distinct crystal faces as opposed to the rounded shapes found at the full-scale plants. All the investigated full-scale plants consistently produced high quality gypsum (High purity, low moisture content and low impurity content). An episode concerning a sudden deterioration in the gypsum dewatering properties was furthermore investigated, and a change in crystal morphology, as well as an increased impurity content (aluminium, iron and fluoride), was detected.
- Calcium sulphate