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Making of DIY Biogas Plant, Anaerobic Digester Experiment

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Habbab Idrees, Sana, and HasanBiogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) Experiment Habbab Idrees, Sana, and HasanBiogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) Experiment Pakistan Science Club

Making of DIY Biogas Plant, Anaerobic Digester Experiment

Concept

The purpose of this project is to discover ways to produce Biogas with alternate sources by using our local resources this project can help students to basics of Anaerobic digestion and production of bio-gas by different organic wastage, basic task is to design, fabricate, and test a simple waste digester and gas collection system.With this system you can examine various facets of the anaerobic digestion process.

Background Information

What is biogas?

Biogas, known as a sour ce of renewable energy, is made mostly of methane. (60-70%) Biogas, as known by many scientific as sociations and universities, is made from a mixture of CH4 (metha ne), CO2 (carbon dioxide), H2S (hydrogen sulfide), NH3 (ammonia), and SO2( sulfur dioxide). This gas is formed when biological matter (usually cow manure), is decomposed in an environment with no oxygen present by bacteria.

Biogas has been popular as a source of energy for over 200 years In order to create In orde r to produce biogas, the individual has to first build an anaerobic (no oxygen present) digester, or an enclosed tank (usually made of steel), where specific types of organic wastes are placed in order for bacteria to decompose them. In the environment, biogas is produced  naturally in deep soils, lake bottoms, and wetlands.

Safety caution !

Since biogas is made mostly of methane, it is highly explosive, and dangerous. There should be no flames or  electrical items around the digester. Some elements and molecules present in biogas can cause suffocation. The digester should be placed in a well-ventilated area. After handli ng the digester or any organic matter, that person should ALWAYS wash his/her hand thoroughly with plenty of soap and water.

Carbon dioxide will asphyxiate  a person if he/she breathes it. Gas produced by rotten egg (H2S) will destroy the lungs and other tissues that serve in smelling.  In order to make an anaerobic digester , biomass is needed. For example, cow manure, grass clipping with soil or any other waste, as long as you use cow manure as a starter, can be used to produce biogas. A digester needs some conditions in order to work properly. For example, there should be a water-biomass ratio of 1 to 5. The pH of this mixture should always remain around 7. An acid or base level will kill the bacteria that causes this gas. A temperature of 0°C to 69°C, although there is a higher production between 29°C and 60°C. Production will be at its peak when it reaches 35°C. The biogas generator should be “fed” daily  a small amount of biomass in order to have enough fresh bacteria to produce large quantities of biogas. After this step, the digester should be agitates (shaken if it is a small bottle) in order to mix the biomass with the water. The recommended time for a home-made project is  a minimum of 2 weeks, when 1/3 of all the biogas production will be made.


When using manure from any animal remember: NO ANTIBIOTICS SHOULD BE GIVEN TO THE ANIMAL!!


WHAT MATERIALS AND EQUIPMENT CAN WE USE?

Your digester may be made up of only the following materials:

  • Digester seed material
  • Digester feed stock
  • 20 liter water can
  • 1/4" plastic tubing -  possible use in gas collection system
  • Medium size Tyre tube for gas storage
  • Tub for mixing water feed stock
  • PVC Pipe 3/4" 2.5 ft
  • T-valve
  • Valve
  • Super glue
  • Fine Sand
  • Soldering Iron
  • Black Color Paint



biogas digester diagram

Download Biogas Digester Diagram


Procedures:

Bio gas plant is a digester and it involves the production of highly combustible methane gas, while constructing a prototype, following prescriptions must be followed.

  • The container that we are using must be air tight, as we know that it’s a digester, that digests the biological waste an aerobically (strictly in the absence of air).
  • Transparent or translucent containers are not to be used for this purpose;if it is transparent it must be painted black because it keeps the temperature steady, if sunlight passes through the container it shall encourage the growth of algae. That is quiet lethal for the production of biogas.
  • Keeping in view that its highly inflammable gas, standard gas fittings must be used in this project. (i.e gas pipes, gas nasals)
  • Animal manure must be used as per containers dimensions, (i.e. in case of 20 l container 18 or 17 l of mixture in ratios of 50% dung and 50%water is prescribed)
  • For the first time. Animal dung must be used later on any biological waste that may include plants waste; dried dung, dried leaves or even paper can be used. But keeping in view that must be mixed in ratio of 50% with water and shaken well.

FEEDING IN THE DIGESTER

  • While feeding in the digester, outlet must stay open so that slurry (digested mixture of dung and water) comes out of outlet.
  • The first production of biogas bring up slowly, so be patient, it may take as long as one complete week to produce gas.
  • Daily one liter of fresh properly mixed biological waste and water in 50% ratio shall be fed in the digester to keep the digester in good working condition.
  • The cheaper, affective and the safer method to store biogas is old tire tube. (i.e. bicycle tire tube or car tire tube as per the dimension of digester)

PRECAUTIONS

  • Avoid the biogas digester from getting in direct contact with sunlight.
  • Avoid it from high temperature variations (Neither too hot, nor too cold )
  • It must not go out of 30C – 40C temperature variations.
  • All safety precautions must be used while testing the biogas, the valve must be faced away while testing the biogas.
  • If results are not found after one week of feeding in biogas digester. Check the pipes for dung or water blockage.


Videos Mini Biogas Plant



(videos host on YouTube so it can not play in Pakistan)

Video: Mini Biogas Plant (Anaerobic Digester) Construction Part 1/3


  • Dung from the animals who are being or were injected antibiotics recently for any reasons are highly discourages.
  • Video: Mini Biogas Plant (Anaerobic Digester) Construction Part 2/3

    Video: Mini Biogas Plant (Anaerobic Digester) Testing Part 3/3


    http://paksc.org/pk/images/stories/forum-logo-2.jpg


    Photos of Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action


    Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action
    Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action
    Habab idrees with Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester)
    Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action
    Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action
    Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action

    Biogas plant (Anaerobic Digester) in action


    11BUILDING UP A PROTOTYPE BIOGAS PLANT
    Bio gas plant is a digester and it involves the production of highly combustible methane gas, while constructing a prototype, following prescriptions must be followed.
    •    The container that we are using must be air tight, as we know that it’s a digester, that digests the biological waste an aerobically (strictly in the absence of air).
    •    Transparent or translucent containers are not to be used for this purpose; it must be painted black because it keeps the temperature steady, if sunlight passes through the container it shall encourage the growth of algae. That is quiet lethal for the production of biogas.
    •    Keeping in view that its highly inflammable gas, standard gas fittings must be used in this project. (i.e gas pipes, gas nasals)
    •    Animal manure must be used as per containers dimensions, (i.e. in case of 20 l container 18 or 17 l of mixture in ratios of 50% dung and 50%water is prescribed)
    •    For the first time. Animal dung must be used later on any biological waste that may include plants waste; dried dung, dried leaves or even paper can be used. But keeping in view that must be mixed in ratio of 50% with water and shaken well.
    FEEDING IN THE DIGESTER
    •    While feeding in the digester, outlet must stay open so that slurry (digested mixture of dung and water) comes out of outlet.
    •    The first production of biogas bring up slowly, so be patient, it may take as long as one complete week to produce gas.
    •    Daily one liter of fresh properly mixed biological waste and water in 50% ratio shall be fed in the digester to keep the digester in good working condition.
    ¬
    •    The cheaper, affective and the safer method to store biogas is old tire tube. (i.e. bicycle tire tube or car tire tube as per the dimension of digester)
    PRECAUTIONS
    •    Avoid the biogas digester from getting in direct contact with sunlight.
    •    Avoid it from high temperature variations (Neither too hot, nor too cold )
    •    It must not go out of 30C – 40C temperature variations.
    •    All safety precautions must be used while testing the biogas, the valve must be faced away while testing the biogas.
    •    If results are not found after one week of feeding in biogas digester. Check the pipes for dung or water blockage.
    •    Dung from the animals who are being or were injected antibiotics recently for any reasons are highly discourages.

    See Also

    • DIY biomethane
    • DIY Bioreactor
    • Bioreactor experiment
    • Biofuel & Biomass Energy Science Fair Projects & Experiments
    • anaerobic digester design
    • anaerobic digester system patent
    • anaerobic digester definition
    • article anaerobic culture
    • methane digester companies
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    29 comments

    • Comment Link Sunday, 20 July 2014 11:08 posted by deepak

      very simple and excellent presentation.

    • Comment Link Friday, 25 April 2014 13:15 posted by George Kiama

      I have really learnt alot about Biogas production from the people of Pakistan.I intend to start my own biogas plant.Here in our country Kenya many people do not know about biogas.I will use the knowledge i have gained to help others.Thank you.

    • Comment Link Monday, 21 October 2013 06:51 posted by ABDUL

      @Maurice
      yes we have made large one for home use you can visit http://www.paksc.org/pk/our-projects/item/747-small-scale-kitchen-waste-biogas-plant.html
      and I didn't found any problems with smells or H2S or NH3. The temprature of the digester remain constant in winter because I used cotton around the digester for insulation.

    • Comment Link Monday, 21 October 2013 05:30 posted by abdulrauf

      yes "Ian" you can use fruit peel as digester feedstock but it should be blended

    • Comment Link Tuesday, 08 January 2013 12:40 posted by Ian

      can i use it just using a fruit peels like mango?? please answer

    • Comment Link Thursday, 20 December 2012 13:39 posted by Maurice

      A great project, well done. Have any of you installed one of these for home use? Any problems with smells or other gas problems H2S or NH3?
      How have you kept the temperature stable?

    • Comment Link Wednesday, 21 November 2012 18:16 posted by ABDUL

      @arslan ali
      20 letter of dung and water fill 4 time Tyre tube, 7 to 10 days required to produce biogas

    • Comment Link Wednesday, 21 November 2012 18:12 posted by ABDUL

      @Siti
      the inlet and outlet pipe closed with pipe caps, this caps stops slurry to go back, and gas pressure remain constant.
      Thanks

    • Comment Link Wednesday, 21 November 2012 17:24 posted by Siti

      hello,
      how you stick the plastic tubing to the tyre tube?? what tool you used? i don't know how to make sure the gas didn't go back to the digester?
      im really interested in this experiment, hope you can reply as soon as possible :)

    • Comment Link Wednesday, 21 November 2012 17:22 posted by Siti

      hello,
      how you stick the plastic tubing to the tyre tube?? what tool you used? i don't know how to make sure the gas didn't go back to the digester?
      im really interested in this experiment, hope you can reply as soon as possible :)

    • Comment Link Sunday, 28 October 2012 07:43 posted by Mark Ng

      I am a Mechanical Engineering Undergraduate Student in Renewable Energy from Malaysia
      Thank you sharing on how you guys carry out this mini Biogas project
      It really makes me amazed that even teenagers nowadays have brilliant mind
      Keep up the good work!
      Thank you

    • Comment Link Thursday, 25 October 2012 19:42 posted by ewache

      boy, you too much... this is so great. i love it. keep it up. the world is in need of you. thank you... you videos were not in english so i could hardly pick the words. if i may ask. what was the other attached pipes for/,

    • Comment Link Tuesday, 09 October 2012 13:18 posted by Renjan

      excellent idea

    • Comment Link Monday, 17 September 2012 05:30 posted by arslan ali

      hy nice work but i still want to how much gas will produce "quantity of gas?"
      also till how many days the methane produced can be used

    • Comment Link Wednesday, 15 August 2012 19:42 posted by muni raval

      great. thanks a lot for making it easy to understand.

    • Comment Link Friday, 01 June 2012 17:51 posted by imran ali

      i like this brother
      but how much gas it produce

    • Comment Link Sunday, 15 April 2012 17:14 posted by Darmore

      This is very interesting. I am about to work on it,but i didn't understand the issue of the old tube.
      I would be very grateful if i am fed back.

    • Comment Link Tuesday, 03 April 2012 08:01 posted by max clamor

      very nice experiment and interesting for all.

    • Comment Link Wednesday, 29 February 2012 15:56 posted by Sana Mehmood

      Dear Gene thanks you for your attention to safety matters we have idea about the risk of that project , we also mentions it Safety caution in that article.
      regards
      Sana Mehmood

    • Comment Link Friday, 10 February 2012 04:27 posted by gene

      methane gas is odorless,colourless how can you assure the safety of people using this kind of gas without asking yourself first what should i do if i have a leaking pipe gas without knowing it because its odourless , colorless and flammable type of gas.your design of simple biogas set up is a good project but not safe for others to try especially for students like your age. although the main focus of your project is using alternative energy you must also consider the safety of others by emphasizing "how can i use this technology with out harming me and others".whats good with new technology if using it might cause more harm than good.anyway your project is good as for now but dont be discouraged or angry by my comments its just im trying to suggest that you must push forward to make your project not just as a project but a very good one.

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