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Experimental and economical evaluation of a novel biogas digester
University of Borås, School of Engineering.
University of Borås, School of Engineering.
University of Borås, School of Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4887-2433
2013 (English)In: Energy Conversion and Management, ISSN 0196-8904, E-ISSN 1879-2227, Vol. 74, 183-191 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Sustainable development
The content falls within the scope of Sustainable Development
Abstract [en]

Many developing countries face an energy demand to satisfy the daily needs of the people. Household biogas digesters are among the interesting solutions to meet the energy demands for cooking and lighting, and at the same time taking care of the kitchen wastes. In this study, a novel textile-based biogas digester was developed. The digester was evaluated for biogas production from a synthetic nutrient and an organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW) as substrates for more than a year. The obtained biogas productivity in both experiments was 570 L/kgVS/day, which indicates that the digester is as efficient in handling of OFMSW as the synthetic nutrients. Based on the obtained biogas production data, the techno-economic evaluation and sensitivity analysis for the process were performed, replacing LPG and kerosene consumption with biogas in households. A 2-m3 digester can supply the fuel needed for cooking for a family of 4–6 people. The sum of investment and 15-years operational costs of this digester was 656 USD, which can be compared with 1455 USD for subsidized-LPG and 975 USD for kerosene, respectively. The results from the sensitivity analysis show that it was a positive investment, unless the price of kerosene goes down to less than 0.18 USD/L.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier Ltd , 2013. Vol. 74, 183-191 p.
Keyword [en]
Household digesters, Biogas, Cooking fuel, Techno-economic analysis
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Research subject
Resource Recovery
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-1584DOI: 10.1016/j.enconman.2013.05.020ISI: 000325302700020Local ID: 2320/12380OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-1584DiVA: diva2:869642
Available from: 2015-11-13 Created: 2015-11-13 Last updated: 2016-07-13Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Industrial Bioprocess Developments for Biogas and Ethanol Production
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Industrial Bioprocess Developments for Biogas and Ethanol Production
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Current biofuels face a noteworthy misfortune on commercialization because of its economiccomparison with low-cost fuel from the oil reserves. To compete with gasoline as a fuel, thebiofuels need to be economically feasible and demonstrated on a large-scale. Biogas and ethanolhave a great potential as commercial biofuels, even though it has difficulties, for example, highcapitalinvestment, absence of demonstrated innovations, and availability of raw materials and soforth. This thesis focuses on different application-driven bioprocess developments for improvingthe techno-economic feasibility of the biogas and ethanol industries.

The biogas industry was studied from three different perspectives:

1) Modeling approach in which a Process Simulation Model (PSM) model was developed forpredicting the biogas productions, as exploiting new substrates is vital for a biogas industrygrowth. The PSM model was created using Aspen Plus® which includes 46 reactions of differentphases in the Anaerobic Digestion (AD) processes. It also contains certain important processparameters, thermodynamics, rate-kinetics, and inhibitions involved in the AD processes. PSMwas a library model for the AD processes, which was validated against the laboratory andindustrial data. The validation showed that the PSM predicted the biogas production about 5% inexcess, which could ease the biogas industry to predict biogas from new substrates.

2) Simulation approach to study the imperative components affecting the profitability of theplant. For this purpose, a local municipality plant was studied under distinct situations. The choiceof upgrading method, capacity, cost of waste and its processing, number of digesters used, etc.were exploited. The results showed that the collection and transportation fee, landfilling fee, andthe reduced operation of a plant were the main considerations in influencing its profitability.Moreover, it was identified that for bigger cities the decentralization strategy could beat theexpense of collection and transportation of waste, and the plant could obtain a 17.8% return oninvestment.

3) Rethinking digester technology in which the cost of the digester was significantly lessenedusing a cutting-edge textile, which was principally intended for developing countries. The digestercost played an important role in consuming biogas for different applications. The textile digesterwas tested on a laboratory scale, followed by field tests in different countries including India,Indonesia, and Brazil. Textile digesters cost one-tenth of the conventional digesters, and thepayback was more or less between 1–3 years, when replacing the Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG)and kerosene as a cooking fuel for households.

When it comes to ethanol, the first generation ethanol production using grains was financiallypossible with a payback of about 13 years. Nonetheless, with the fluctuation of the oil prices, theethanol industries need to look for alternative sources of revenues. Different retrofits wereconsidered, including the effect of thin-stillage/whole-stillage to ethanol and biomass, in additionto the integration of the first and second generation ethanol production. The results revealed that4% additional ethanol could be obtained when the thin-stillage was converted into ethanol andfungal biomass, while the payback was reduced to 11.5 years. The integration of the first andsecond generation ethanol production revealed that it has a positive influence on the overalleconomics of the process with a payback of 10.5 years. This could help the ethanol industries toconsider a revamp for a better environmental, economic, and energy efficient process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Borås: Högskolan i Borås, 2015. 64 p.
Series
Skrifter från Högskolan i Borås, ISSN 0280-381X ; 71
Keyword
biogas, ethanol, process design, techno-economic analysis, simulation, modeling
National Category
Environmental Biotechnology
Research subject
Resource Recovery
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-668 (URN)978-91-87525-71-1 (ISBN)978-91-87525-72-8 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-11-06, E310, Allegatan 1, Borås, 10:00 (English)
Available from: 2015-10-02 Created: 2015-08-25 Last updated: 2017-05-04Bibliographically approved

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