Sulfur release and capture behavior of lignites with highly combustible sulfur-contents were investigated by extending a previously-developed comprehensive model to incorporate sulfur retention. The predictive performance of the model was tested by comparing the model predictions with on-line concentration measurements of O-2, CO2, CO and SO2. Favorable comparisons are obtained between the predicted and measured concentrations of gaseous species along the combustor. Results show that freeboard sulfur-capture is enhanced significantly with recycling of elutriated sorbent particles as the sulfur release to the freeboard is significant for fuels rich in combustible sulfur. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.