Biogas plants only process a limited range of organic substances. But a new biogas plant could solve this problem by making use of a number of materials which would otherwise have to be disposed of at a great cost.
A team of scientists at the German Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental Energy and Safety Technology is currently working on a highly efficient biogas power plant which is also a biobattery.
The Fraunhofer Institute’s biobattery process utilizes various types of raw materials like straw, sewage sludge, green waste, scrap wood, food waste and manure. It not only generates electricity and heat but also a variety of useful energy sources like purified gas, engine oil, and fertilizer at the same time.
The raw materials first pass through a sluice in an air-free environment into a continuously rotating screw. The material is then heated up and broken down into biochar and volatile gasses. Some of the gas is purified and collected, and a part is condensed and turned into water and bio-oil. While the bio-oil can be converted into fuel for ships and planes, biochar can be used as a fertilizer.