Evaluation of alternative refuse-derived fuel use as a valuable resource in various valorised applications

Grzegorz Gałko, Izabela Mazur, Michał Rejdak, Barbara Jagustyn, Joanna Hrabak, Miloud Ouadi, Hessam Jahangiri, Marcin Sajdak*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Waste generation creates issues that must be resolved to reduce the impact of waste on the environment. Therefore, some waste fractions are transformed into refuse-derived fuels (RDFs). Due to their status as waste products and their heterogeneity based on the location of municipal solid waste (MSW) generation, there are significant challenges associated with the distribution of RDFs as a valuable fuel on the market. This manuscript reviews the current status of the process and the legislative challenges associated with the application of alternative fuels. The fundamental reason for preparing this knowledge evaluation is that there are limited opportunities to use waste as a fuel, such as RDF, in commercial power generation due to combustion process restrictions. According to the results of the analyses, only approximately 48% of RDF fuels may be used to safely create energy. To fully realise the promise of RDF fuels, the remaining 52% requires a different technological, process, or thermal approach. Various solutions were investigated to identify the main challenges associated with the application of RDFs in select thermal processes. The processing of RDFs under specific conditions can allow us to obtain valuable energy. The handling of alternative fuels is limited by their status as waste materials. The application of RDFs as alternative fuels in coke-making blends for blast furnace coke production was also examined. However, preventing waste formation and limiting its negative impact on the environment are the most important objectives. Therefore, measures to work towards these objectives are necessary.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125920
Number of pages15
Early online date1 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Faculty of Energy and Environmental Engineering, Silesian University of Technology (statutory research) and the Institute for Chemical Processing of Coal under the Iuventus Plus Program for 2015–2016 (project No. IP2014 041073 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd


  • Alternative fuels
  • Classification of refuse-derived fuel
  • Refuse-derived fuel supplementation
  • Thermal treatment
  • Waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Building and Construction
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Pollution
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Energy
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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