The biogas plant treats slurry and other waste products from the research centre. Another important purpose of the biogas plant is to enable researchers to study the biogas processes.
The researchers have a unique opportunity to study in full scale the effect on the process of changes on factors, such as biomass composition, retention time, and temperature.
The biogas plant is not reserved purely for the researchers at Aarhus University. Other researchers from far and wide periodically work at the plant as well. Private companies are also very welcome.
In addition to the main plant with the 1200 m3 reactor, the plant is equipped with:
- laboratories for measuring, for example, gas quality and volatile fatty acid concentrations
- two 30 m3 reactors and two 10 m3 reactors with four reception tanks and two solids feeders instruments for measuring, controlling and monitoring the process demonstration hall, offices, etc.
- and, not least, the possible assistance of researchers and technicians with a very large expertise in the area
Ongoing research and development
The facilities are currently used within the following areas:
- selection and composition of different organic materials on the basis of economy, sustainability and practical application in the biogas process
- pretreatment of biomass
- application of enzyme-processed household waste
- the significance of using additives in addition to the biomass
- derived effect of different biomasses on the environment, for example, through reduced discharges of nitrogen to the aquatic environment
- optimal cultivation strategies, harvesting times, etc., for crops
- production of biogas for fuel cells
- improvements to the physical process in biogas plants in order to increase productivity
- the precise effect on the emission of greenhouse gases
- the potential contribution of organic farming to biogas production
- optimisation of plant operation, including the measurement of environmental impact
Related projects within environmental technology are source separation in the animal house, treatment of biogas process products, storage and application of animal manure, and odour reduction. Several of the ongoing projects involve research institutes abroad.