In the modern industrialized society power is an essential ingredient of economic development. For developing country like India, it is the life-line of our progress. Energy is the single most crucial driver of the country’s development. Unfortunately, today this essential ingredient is in short supply throughout the world. The only way to come out of this crisis is to use energy more efficiently.
India currently generates more than 65% of its total electricity from non-renewable sources of energy such as coal, gas and oil. Analysts say that for India to be able to meet its growing demand it needs to start taking a serious look at other sources such as solar power.
Developing new sources of energy like Bio-gas technology, usage of energy efficient appliances and machines can save us from a disaster. As they say “ Energy saved is Energy produced!”
Biogas typically refers to a gas produced by breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen.
Organic waste such as dead plant and animal material, animal faces and kitchen waste can be converted into a gaseous fuel called Biogas. Biogas originates from biogenic material and is a type of bio fuel.
Biogas is produced by the anaerobic digestion or fermentation of biodegradable materials biomass, manure, sewage, municipal waste, green waste, plant material and crops.
Biogas comprises primarily methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) and may have small amounts of hydrogen sulphide (H2S), moisture and siloxanes.
Large-scale systems - Industrial processing
- Tank volume: 100 m3 and multiples
- Feed material: 500 tones/day and upwards
Small scales - Domestic processing:
- Tank volume: 0.25 to 10 m3
- Feed material: 5 kg to 300 kg /day
- Low operating cost, No maintenance charge for GRP tank
- GRP is Corrosion free, so long life span.
- Pre-fab GRP tank – easy installation; quick build - less cost
GRP is well insulated.
- Steel drum can rust, it is expensive.
- Concrete dome needs to be sealed to make it gas tight.
- Highly skilled labour required to build concrete dome, otherwise it will not give result if not build correctly.
- Additional income
- Autonomy in heat in a context of increase in the cost of fossil energies
- Diversification of outlets for crops
- Reduction of manure purchase thanks to valorization of digested sludge
Input to a Biogas Plant
Cattle dung seen as good feedstock:
- correct organisms
- food chewed so accessible to organisms
- Other animal dung: pig, horse, chicken
- Human sewage
Food processing residues
- e.g. market wastes
Vegetable matter gives more gas per kg, than dung.
- (animals & humans already used energy)
Used to clean waste waters
- e.g. from coffee or sugar production.
- Grown especially for energy production
- Wastes can be mixed: e.g.
- Dung + sewage
- Food residues + sewage
- All can be used at any scale:
- Domestic to Industrial
Outputs from a Biogas Plant
- Biogas: 60% methane 40% carbon dioxide: high grade fuel.
Used for cooking.
- Replace firewood and charcoal, so reduces deforestation.
- Replace LPG and kerosene, so saves fossil carbon.
- Biogas: used as an engine fuel.
- Static engines to generate electricity.
- Need large amounts of feed material 1 tonne /day = 1 kW
Compress gas - use in vehicles
- Need 50% energy in gas to do so.