Pressure measurements were conducted in a two-dimensional hot atmospheric bubbling fluidized bed reactor in the laboratory of Energy and Process Engineering at Tampere University of Technology. A set of six fast pressure transducers was used to detect the rapid pressure fluctuations inside the bubbling bed of the reactor. These pressure transducers were placed both vertically and horizontally into the reactor. From these measurements it was found that the vertical pressure fluctuation took place at the same time at different levels of the bed. Also the same fluctuation could be seen under the air distributor. The horizontal pressure fluctuation was found to vary both by place and time. At the bottom part of the bed the highest pressure peaks was found at centre of the bed. Most of the time there was a pressure gradient the highest pressure being in the centre of the bed. This gradient creates horizontal flow of gases from middle to the sides. The velocity of this flow varies with the size of the pressure gradient. The opposite effect can be found in the upper part of the bed. The highest pressure was no more in the middle part of the bed. Instead, it was found to be between the centre of the bed and left and right walls. The pressure was low at the walls but also rather low at the middle of the bed. There must be flow towards the walls and to the centre axis. These pressure fluctuations can provide an explanation for the well-known “wandering plume” effect. They can also give a tool to better describe the mixing inside a bubbling fluidized bed. This kind of tool is needed when biomass combustion is modelled in bubbling fluidized bed.

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