Improved process control in bioenergy plants

Biogas is an essential source of renewable energy. Unlike other renewable energy sources such as wind or solar energy, the Biogas produced is a storable product. For the future, it is necessary that the power is generated as needed. This requires storage of renewable energy. This project investigates the use of Biogas as a storage option for surplus solar and wind power via Sabatier reaction.

Innovative Biogas technologies

 

The German and Danish Biogas industry has developed in different directions. While the focus is directed to the use of energy crops in Germany, residues are mainly used (eg straw) in Denmark. The fermentation of waste materials is technically complex and still needs further development. However, the use of energy crops is widely disputed..  

 

New processes for new substrates

In order to use waste materials such as manure and straw for Biogas production, the existing plant designs must be optimized and supplemented by new technologies. In this regard, this project worked on developing a new digester concept that, inter alia, allows the use of pig manure and other liquid wastes for Biogas production. This novel concept fermenter (anaerobic baffled reactor as short ABR known) allows to divide the biogas process in its various stages, so that it more stable, faster and more efficient and yet runs as in the case in conventional systems.

 

The density of biogas plants and their installed capacity north and south of the German-Danish border is one of the highest in the world and continues to grow. This raises issues regarding competition for suitable substrates, the public pressure and the trend towards commodity diversification, lack of quality standards for substrates and optimization processes, sustainable heat utilization concepts, the use of alternative networks (electricity and gas networks), process control, efficiency and flexibility.

Bioenergy is an essential source of renewable energy. Unlike other renewable energy sources such as wind or solar energy it can be generated continuously and in principle is storable. Because of this flexible energy production system could be developed based on Biogas production thus being complementary to the fluctuating renewable energy systems.

Biogas can be an important interface between the two major energy networks in our region: the power supply and the gas network. Due to the political discussion, which is probable, bioenergy, at least in Germany, responds more dynamically to the requirements than is the case today.