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Publication Title | Biogas Production From A Covered Lagoon Digester And Utilization In A Microturbine

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Biogas Production From A Covered Lagoon Digester And Utilization In A Microturbine

Williams, Douglas W., Professor

BioResource and Agricultural Engineering Department California Polytechnic State University

San Luis Obispo, CA 93402, USA, e-mail: dwwillia@calpoly.edu

Gould-Wells, Diana, Instructor

Civil and Environmental Engineering Department California Polytechnic State University

San Luis Obispo, CA 93402

ABSTRACT

This paper will summarize results of data collection from the lagoon-type methane recovery system at the Cal Poly dairy, which has approximately 300 cows, calves and heifers. The project at present consists of a 14,000 cubic meter (4 million gallons) earthen lagoon, with pump and piping to transfer the dilute dairy manure wastewater from the solids separator to the new lagoon. Also included is a 45-mil thickness, reinforced polypropylene lagoon cover of approximately 4600 square meters including Styrofoam floats, weights, tie-down and gas manifold system. This covers approximately 90% of the total lagoon surface area. The existing biogas handing system includes piping to condensate trap, gas meter, gas blower and continuous- ignition flare. A 30 KW microturbine with associated compressor and heat exchanger has also been obtained for converting the biogas into electricity. Grants from the California State University Research Initiative (CSU-ARI) and the Western Regional Biomass Energy Program (WRBEP) have paid for purchase, installation and initial operation of the equipment. The lagoon-microturbine system has been operating for 9 months in order to obtain the following operating parameters – wastewater flows, biogas production, and estimated electrical production. The microturbine produces from 15 to 25 KW at an efficiency of 20 to 25 %, and with reduced NOX emissions of 3 ppm. This project will provide the following environmental and economic benefits: odor control by capturing the manure gases including ammonia; preventing methane, a significant greenhouse gas, from escaping into the atmosphere; and providing the economic benefit of electricity and process heat worth $10,000 annually.

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