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Land ll

CEM Ambiente SpA

After 24 years, the debris-laden land ll in Cavenago di Brianza, Italy – about 30 miles from Milan – closed in 1994 and was transformed into a lush, picturesque natural area that today is home to grazing animals, abundant wildlife, magni cent meadows, and tranquil elds. Far underground, however, sits decomposing garbage that continues to produce methane biogas, a waste product of the aging land ll site.

Instead of aring the methane gas into the atmosphere like a majority of land lls worldwide, CEM Ambiente SpA, a solid-waste management company that serves 450,000 residents in the region, decided in 1994 to use a portion of the methane gas to fuel a reciprocating engine at its nearby headquarters. The company’s goal: use the two megawatts of electricity produced by the engine to help power CEM Ambiente’s headquarters.

But in 2010, problems arose when the methane content of the biogas dropped to 30 percent, which is common among aging land lls. The 30 percent methane content was too low for the antiquated reciprocating engine to use as fuel. CEM Ambiente of cials began searching for a more reliable, ef cient, and environmentally friendly power source.

That year they found the answer with ve highly ef cient, quiet, and low-emission Capstone C65 Microturbines installed in a combined heat and power (CHP) application.

At a glance


Cavenago di Brianza, Italy


March 2010


Methane gas


• Five C65 Capstone MicroTurbines®.

• Five Heat Recovery Modules.

• Two Adicomp Gas Compressors.


• Overall ef ciency of the CHP system exceeds 80%.

• Produces 325kW of electricity (7,800kW hours) each day.

• Reduces C02 emissions by 3,900 metric tons (8.6 million pounds) annually.

• Microturbines easily operate using biogas with methane content of 30% or less. Former reciprocating engine unable to run at this methane content level.

• First land ll in Italy to showcase Capstone microturbines.

Image | Land ll CEM Ambiente SpA

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