Bamboo Charcoal Introduction
Bamboo charcoal contains many pores and gaps in its structure, making it excellent for adsorption, electromagnetic shielding, and infrared emitting. One of the more popular process used in making bamboo charcoal is with brick kiln. There are several different quality of bamboo charcoal, such as density, fixed carbon content, ash and volatile matter content, specific surface area, etc. The carbonization temperature contributes most to bamboo charcoal quality and properties. The temperature used in carbonizing bamboo charcoal will affect its adsorption capacity of to methanal, benzene, methylbenzene, ammonia, and chloroform.
Besides absorption, bamboo charcoal is also know to be antibacterial and antifungal. Japanese scientist also researched and found that bamboo charcoals generate negative ions. More accurately, the infrared rays emitted constantly from charcoals reduce moisture in the air into fine particles that naturally change into negative ions. This means that a certain amount of moisture must be present in the air if bamboo charcoal is used to increase the room's negative ion ratio.

Moso Bamboo
Bamboo is said to be the fastest growing plant in the world. The bamboo that we want to focus on is Moso Bamboo (Phyllostachys heterocycla pubescens). Moso Bamboo grows naturally in the mountains of Taiwan, without the use of any pesticides. Moso bamboo can grow up to 119 cm (47 inches) in 24 hours and 24 m (78? feet) high in 40 to 50 days. Its culm diameter at 1.3 m (51 inches) above the ground is 6 cm to 18 cm (2.3 to 7 inches). After it is planted, Moso Bamboo matures in 5 years and shows not much visible growth after 5 years. Not only does Moso Bamboo grow fast, the benefits of Moso Bamboo and Moso Bamboo charcoal is also better than the average bamboo species.

Taiwan Moso Bamboo Charcoal
Moso Bamboo Charcoal has the following properties; anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, absorbs odor, absorbs harmful pollutants in the air and water, regulating humidity, adsorb and emit far-infrared radiation and release beneficial negative ions.
Compared to wood charcoal and other bamboo charcoal, as Taiwan experience typhoon every year, Taiwan Moso bamboo charcoal contains more micro-pores, hence adsorption property is better due to its larger specific surface area. Adsorption of bamboo charcoal is classified into physical adsorption and chemical adsorption. Physical adsorption is caused by molecule acting force (Van der Waals force) between adsorbent and adsorbate that doesn't change the surface composition of adsorbent and the situation of the molecule of adsorbate. Chemical adsorption is by chemical bond between adsorbent and adsorbate in which the exchange and transference of electrons happen to result in rearrange of atoms and chemical bond formation or destroying.

Physical adsorption is faster and reversible. It occurs in lower temperature without selection and acts in monolayer or multilayer because there is Van der Waals force on one layer of molecule of adsorbate.Similar to chemical reactions, chemical adsorption needs activation energy. It is not reversible and occurs in higher temperature with chemical output. As opposed to physical adsorption, it is monolayer adsorption with distinct selection."In nature, ions are formed in a variety of ways. About half are created by radioactive gases. Radioactive substances in the soil, cosmic rays, ultraviolet rays, air flow friction, falling water and plants all produce the other half." Bamboo charcoals also generate negative ions. More accurately, the infrared rays emitted constantly from bamboo charcoal reduce moisture in the air into fine particles that naturally change into negative ions.

The electric conductivity of bamboo charcoal will be reinforced with the rising of carbonization temperature. When carbonization temperature reaches 800óJ, bamboo charcoal becomes quite conductive. Therefore, bamboo charcoal carbonized under high temperature has effective property for shielding electromagnetism. Currently bamboo charcoal products are gaining popularity as it has excellent adsorption and infrared radiation properties. New products from Bamboo charcoal such as purifying drinking water and indoor air, adjusting humid in house, health care, odor adsorption, bamboo charcoal arts and so on are becoming common in our homes. Some of products with shielding electromagnetism and anti-radiation are in research.

Bamboo charcoal is now used daily in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and China. Japanese use bamboo charcoal for purifying drinking water, place some of slice bamboo charcoal while cooking rice, use bamboo charcoal for adjusting indoor humidity, put bamboo charcoal to remove odor in refrigerators, and use the mattress, pillow, and insoles that are filled with bamboo charcoal. South Koreans are using bamboo charcoal as fuel in their barbecue. With more uses discovered, bamboo charcoal products are gaining popularity with consumers worldwide.

Carbonization of bamboo charcoal
How bamboo charcoal is made
Bamboo carbonization can be divided into four stages according to temperature and products situation in a kiln. Firsts stage drying: the temperature is below 120óJ and the speed of carbonization is slow. Heat is used to evaporate the water in bamboo, and the chemical composition of the bamboo is still intact. Second stage pre-carbonization: the temperature is in the range of 120óJ to 260óJ and there is a distinct chemical reaction in bamboo. The unstable chemical compounds begin to decompose and carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide are released.

Third stage carbonization: the temperature is in the range of 260óJ to 450óJ, and the bamboo is decomposed into liquid and gas products. Liquid products contain much acetic acid, methanol and bamboo tar. Flammable methane and ethylene in gas products are increasing while carbon dioxide production is reduced.
Fourth stage calcinations (refining stage): the temperature is over 450óJ. The bamboo is becomes charcoal by means of providing a mass of heat, emitting the volatile substances and to enhance non-volatile carbon. Based on the temperature in this stage, the bamboo charcoal can be divided into three groups (low-temperature, middle-temperature and high-temperature charcoal). The quality and properties of bamboo charcoal differs with different temperatures during the refining stage.

Lastly the bamboo is left to cool down and depending on the weather;
this process may take from five to eight days.