Biogas, Biodiesel, and Wood Gasifiers

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by Asia-Off-Grid, Jul 22, 2018.


  1. Asia-Off-Grid

    Asia-Off-Grid RIP 11-8-2018

    Okay. Hopefully someone here can help me answer a question (or two) that I have regarding this technology.

    Recently, as anyone can see, I have been uploading a number of resources that I have compiled, with a LOT of help from @Witch Doctor 01, and others, as well as files I have been collecting myself, over time. I also have found similar files already uploaded here, so as not to duplicate the uploads, if possible.

    Some of these resources are on topics regarding biogas, biodiesel, and wood gasifiers. Granted, I will admit that we have yet to try any of this technology. But, I can say that I have started collecting the parts necessary, to try a biogas digester or wood gasifier. Or, maybe even both...

    Anyway, my main question is, why hasn't this technology, which has been around for a very long time, not taken off? One would think that everybody and his brother would have some of this tech in their backyard, by now.

    Are people just too lazy to concern themselves with it, especially in First World countries? I mean, after all, it is a heck of a lot easier just to go to the petrol station and say, "Fill 'er up, Mac."

    Or, is it something else entirely. I'm sure, unlike some "blue states", where they seem to even illegalize rainwater harvesting, this tech should be something to consider, no? With the cost of LPG, NG, and petrol and diesel in today's world, would it not seem logical to try other ways to power vehicles, generators, and even stove top burners?

    Here in Cambodia, petrol is currently $1.00 / Liter, or $3.78 USD / gallon. I can only imagine, after the initial investment, how little it would cost to produce my own biogas.

    Here is a video I just viewed, that helped me to follow through and create this topic:


    The FEMA file he refers to in the video, is a resource uploaded on this site, and LOCATED HERE.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2018
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  2. DKR

    DKR Interesting ideas, interesting stories

    Many people in the US today have home biodigesters (bioreactor) and just don't know it.

    Why


    It's all in the name. Septic tanks are considered low tech....
    [​IMG]
     
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  3. DKR

    DKR Interesting ideas, interesting stories

    There are commercial products to make bio-gas... Here are a couple of example types - expanding and fixed.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Most neighbors in an Urban area would
    1) Freak out
    2) call Code enforcement
    or
    3) Sue you for maintaining a nuance - esp if there were a leak (odor)

    BTW Paul - auto gas here in Anchorage is at least as expensive as in your area....
     
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  4. Asia-Off-Grid

    Asia-Off-Grid RIP 11-8-2018

    I see, and agree with what you are saying. But, that still doesn't answer my question(s), as to why more people aren't producing their own gas. Or, are you saying they don't, due to the issues in dealing with neighbors and housing authorities in their areas? Burying them is an option, as well. Out of sight, out of mind...

    I have to admit, living in SEA sure seems like a plus, sometimes, without all the crazy rules and regulations.

    I would have thought it would cost considerably more, especially the farther you get from populated areas in AK?
     
  5. DKR

    DKR Interesting ideas, interesting stories

    Some more commercial products - this time, world wide

    [​IMG]
    Backyard unit eats trash to make biofuel Israeli, of course)

    [​IMG]
    Chinese - between 1 and 2K USD depending on the siting.

    [​IMG]
    an Indian offering, different as it is just to treat effluent. NO biogas production intended.

    [​IMG]
    unknown vendor, but this a nicely done 'Home sized' unit....


    Much past these and you get into what I would call 'industrial' systems that require a lot of space and have dedicated, trained staff - even if part time.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2018
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  6. Asia-Off-Grid

    Asia-Off-Grid RIP 11-8-2018

    @DKR, the last image isn't showing.
     
  7. DKR

    DKR Interesting ideas, interesting stories


    Even in ground, low temps for most of the year rules these out here for the most part. here/locally - NatGas is both cheap and plentiful - the house if already on the system.

    If building new and you could engineer a BGR into the plan, it might be worth the extra cost and effort, esp if you lived in a rural US area that required purchase of propane. Even then - to secure a loan, you might have to have a propane 'backup' system for heat and cooking.

    Banks are funny that way...
     
  8. Asia-Off-Grid

    Asia-Off-Grid RIP 11-8-2018

    I have to admit, I didn't take cool weather into consideration, for part of the country, anyway. Here, we only have hot and dry, and hot and wet seasons. :)
     
  9. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    A partial answer is that biogas is a relatively low heat (BTU) content fuel. While it can be and is used world wide for some functions (as in self generated power at waste treatment plants in both spark and compression ignition engines) it has to be compressed to some degree and needs to have some impurities removed. That alone has some interesting complexities. Add to that is the fact that these plants use a wet anaerobic process in the digestors, which could become a bit problematic on a household scale. To add to it, running those engines does NOT replace the need for commercial power, but sure does save some operating costs, both in terms of reducing the commercial bill AND providing heat to the digestors and for other uses. The big deal is the hesheitpower needed to keep things running smoothly. All those guys at the refineries are doing what you would need to do at home to keep a biogas system happy.

    Now I have to say that it is more than possible a home operation could light a few lanterns but I do NOT think I want to deal with the stinkies they would give off. One other good effect is volume reduction, easing the disposal problem dramatically.

    As a hobby, it has to rise to the top of the interest charts for the mechanically inclined, just don't set your reactor too close to the house ----
     
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  10. Asia-Off-Grid

    Asia-Off-Grid RIP 11-8-2018

    From what I understand, and only going by what I have read / heard / understood at this point, by the time the gas is filtered and scrubbed, has little to no odor by the time it is exiting a stovetop burner.

    No doubt!
     
  11. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Main problem is technology. My old 1941 9n ford tractor will run on wood gas, drip gas, with proper carb, kerosene, propane, gasoline, etc. It can be set up with a manual spark advance, it has low compression, it has an updraft carb, no cat converters to get contaminated, etc. Most modern engines have some form of fuel injection that meters the fuel and air for efficiency and to cut pollution, the fuel passages are very small, the ignition process can not be easily controlled, the compression levels are high, etc. In addition, if you wish to build and sell the conversions, the proper testing for the EPA, insurance against law suits. other governmental regulations, etc, make it almost impossible to do. If you get a 1940's ford tractor and use the materials on the internet based on WW2 systems, you can easily build a system that will work, can't tell you if it will be worth the trouble, but if you are going to try to use wood gas with a 2018 small car, good luck and may the force be with you as you are going to need all the help you can get.
     
  12. Asia-Off-Grid

    Asia-Off-Grid RIP 11-8-2018

    In all honesty, the most I would ever wish to run off any sort of gas production, would be a small generator (or two) and stove top burners for meals. Probably, the latter more than the former, even.
     
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  13. DKR

    DKR Interesting ideas, interesting stories

    LACSD Website - Joint Water Pollution Control Plant

    The JWPCP is one of the largest wastewater treatment plants in the world and is the largest of the Sanitation Districts' wastewater treatment plants. The facility provides both primary and secondary treatment for approximately 260 million gallons of wastewater per day (mgd), and has a total permitted capacity of 400 mgd. For a detailed description of the wastewater inlet and plant discharge characteristics, see Plant Performance.

    Solids collected in Primary Treatment and Secondary Treatment are processed in anaerobic digestion tanks where bacteria break down organic material and produce methane gas. After digestion, the solids are dewatered at Solids Processing and hauled off-site to composting, land application, and landfill disposal. Methane gas generated in the anaerobic digestion process is used to produce power and digester heating steam in a Total Energy Facility that utilizes gas turbines and waste-heat recovery steam generators. The on-site generation of electricity permits the JWPCP to produce most of its electricity.
     
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  14. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Brewery Monkey Moderator

    What every waste treatment plant should be, but isn't. Ours just runs (recently) a continuous Olympic flame. They used to just vent the Methane and CO2 to the atmosphere...
     
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  8. Asia-Off-Grid
    Resource

    Biogas Notes 2008

    Biogas Notes, By Paul Harris. [IMG]
    Posted By: Asia-Off-Grid, Jul 21, 2018 in category: Energy
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