IMPROVED BIOMASS UTILIZATION THROUGH REMOTE FLOW SENSING

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The growth of the livestock industry provides a valuable source of affordable, sustainable, and renewable bioenergy, while also requiring the safe disposal of the large quantities of animal wastes (manure) generated at dairy, swine, and poultry farms. If these biomass resources are mishandled and underutilized, major environmental problems will be created, such as surface and ground water contamination, odors, dust, ammonia leaching, and methane emission. Anaerobic digestion of animal wastes, in which microorganisms break down organic materials in the absence of oxygen, is one of the most promising waste treatment technologies. This process produces biogas typically containing {approx}65% methane and ... continued below

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17 MB (521 Pages)

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Washington University- St. Louis: Muthanna Al-Dahhan (Principal Investigator) E-mail: muthanna@wustl.edu Rajneesh Varma Khursheed Karim Mehul Vesvikar Rebecca Hoffman Oak Ridge National Laboratory: David Depaoli, (Co-principal investigator) Email: depaolidw@ornl.gov Thomas Klasson Alan L. Wintenberg Charles W Alexander Lloyd Clonts Iowa Energy Center Norm Olson Email: nolson@energy.iastate.edu March 26, 2007.

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Description

The growth of the livestock industry provides a valuable source of affordable, sustainable, and renewable bioenergy, while also requiring the safe disposal of the large quantities of animal wastes (manure) generated at dairy, swine, and poultry farms. If these biomass resources are mishandled and underutilized, major environmental problems will be created, such as surface and ground water contamination, odors, dust, ammonia leaching, and methane emission. Anaerobic digestion of animal wastes, in which microorganisms break down organic materials in the absence of oxygen, is one of the most promising waste treatment technologies. This process produces biogas typically containing {approx}65% methane and {approx}35% carbon dioxide. The production of biogas through anaerobic digestion from animal wastes, landfills, and municipal waste water treatment plants represents a large source of renewable and sustainable bio-fuel. Such bio-fuel can be combusted directly, used in internal combustion engines, converted into methanol, or partially oxidized to produce synthesis gas (a mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide) that can be converted to clean liquid fuels and chemicals via Fischer-Tropsch synthesis. Different design and mixing configurations of anaerobic digesters for treating cow manure have been utilized commercially and/or tested on a laboratory scale. These digesters include mechanically mixed, gas recirculation mixed, and slurry recirculation mixed designs, as well as covered lagoon digesters. Mixing is an important parameter for successful performance of anaerobic digesters. It enhances substrate contact with the microbial community; improves pH, temperature and substrate/microorganism uniformity; prevents stratification and scum accumulation; facilitates the removal of biogas from the digester; reduces or eliminates the formation of inactive zones (dead zones); prevents settling of biomass and inert solids; and aids in particle size reduction. Unfortunately, information and findings in the literature on the effect of mixing on anaerobic digestion are contradictory. One reason is the lack of measurement techniques for opaque systems such as digesters. Better understanding of the mixing and hydrodynamics of digesters will result in appropriate design, configuration selection, scale-up, and performance, which will ultimately enable avoiding digester failures. Accordingly, this project sought to advance the fundamental knowledge and understanding of the design, scale up, operation, and performance of cow manure anaerobic digesters with high solids loading. The project systematically studied parameters affecting cow manure anaerobic digestion performance, in different configurations and sizes by implementing computer automated radioactive particle tracking (CARPT), computed tomography (CT), and computational fluid dynamics (CFD), and by developing novel multiple-particle CARPT (MP-CARPT) and dual source CT (DSCT) techniques. The accomplishments of the project were achieved in a collaborative effort among Washington University, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the Iowa Energy Center teams. The following investigations and achievements were accomplished: Systematic studies of anaerobic digesters performance and kinetics using various configurations, modes of mixing, and scales (laboratory, pilot plant, and commercial sizes) were conducted and are discussed in Chapter 2. It was found that mixing significantly affected the performance of the pilot plant scale digester ({approx}97 liter). The detailed mixing and hydrodynamics were investigated using computer automated radioactive particle tracking (CARPT) techniques, and are discussed in Chapter 3. A novel multiple particle tracking technique (MP-CARPT) technique that can track simultaneously up to 8 particles was developed, tested, validated, and implemented. Phase distribution was investigated using gamma ray computer tomography (CT) techniques, which are discussed in Chapter 4. A novel dual source CT (DSCT) technique was developed to measure the phase distribution of dynamic three phase system such as digesters with high solids loading and other types of gas-liquid-solid fluidization systems. Evaluation and validation of the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models and closures were conducted to model and simulate the hydrodynamics and mixing intensity of the anaerobic digesters (Chapter 5). It is strongly recommended that additional studies be conducted, both on hydrodynamics and performance, in large scale digesters. The studies should use advanced non-invasive measurement techniques, including the developed novel measurement techniques, to further understand their design, scale-up, performance, and operation to avoid any digester failure. The final goal is a system ready to be used by farmers on site for bioenergy production and for animal/farm waste treatment.

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17 MB (521 Pages)

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  • Report No.: DE/FC36/01GO11054
  • Grant Number: FC36-01GO11054
  • DOI: 10.2172/901283 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 901283
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc887801

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Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • March 26, 2007

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • Oct. 31, 2016, 6:39 p.m.

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Washington University- St. Louis: Muthanna Al-Dahhan (Principal Investigator) E-mail: muthanna@wustl.edu Rajneesh Varma Khursheed Karim Mehul Vesvikar Rebecca Hoffman Oak Ridge National Laboratory: David Depaoli, (Co-principal investigator) Email: depaolidw@ornl.gov Thomas Klasson Alan L. Wintenberg Charles W Alexander Lloyd Clonts Iowa Energy Center Norm Olson Email: nolson@energy.iastate.edu. IMPROVED BIOMASS UTILIZATION THROUGH REMOTE FLOW SENSING, report, March 26, 2007; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc887801/: accessed October 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.