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Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Pollution Control

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  024188,  2002 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.10525) @2002
Authors:   Philip R. Goodrich, David Schmidt
Keywords:   Anaerobic Digestion, Methane, Odor, Pollution Control, Energy, Biogas

Anaerobic digestion is again being taken seriously because of increasing concerns about the environmental hazards of manure. The push to produce more renewable energy locally to reduce dependence on fossil fuels has also had an effect. A well running plug-flow digester on the Haubenschild dairy in Princeton, Minnesota has provided two continuous years of electrical energy production and operational data. Air pollution control and energy production coupled with the nutrient utilization are the reasons the digester project was installed at Haubenschild Farms. The 800 cows produce enough methane to generate about 2900 kWh per day of electricity, 1500 kWh of which is used on the farm. The remainder is sold as "Green Energy" and marketed to consumers who wish to use electricity generated from renewable sources. The digester is producing at least 30 percent more biogas beyond the design numbers. The dairy also saves $400 per month in heating costs by using waste heat from the generator. The up time on the generator has been about 95%. This project has shown that a payback of 5 years or less on investment is possible.

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