http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.15Change: -0.05
R/$ = 11.65Change: -0.10
Au 1283.66 $/ozChange: 10.51
Pt 1240.50 $/ozChange: 12.30
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Aug 31, 2012

Biogas-from-sludge solution could yield power savings for water plants

Back
Africa|Cleaning|Engines|Generators|Projects|Waste|Water|WEC Projects|Africa|South Africa|By-product|Chemical Compounds|Cleaning|Electricity|Electricity Grid|Energy|Energy-generation Potential|Fuel Gas Engine Generators|Maintenance|Possible Electricity Saving|Product|Jason Gifford|Power|Waste|Water|Operations|Wastewater Treatment
Africa|Cleaning|Engines|Generators|Projects|Waste|Water||Africa||Cleaning|Energy|Maintenance||Power|Waste|Water|Operations|
africa-company|cleaning-company|engines|generators|projects|waste-company|water-company|wec-projects|africa|south-africa|byproduct|chemical-compounds|cleaning|electricity|electricity-grid|energy|energy-generation-potential-industry-term|fuel-gas-engine-generators|maintenance|possible-electricity-saving|product|jason-gifford|power|waste|water|operations|wastewater-treatment
© Reuse this



Aconsiderable 30 MW a year could poten- tially be saved at South African waste- water treatment plants should the methane-rich biogas emitted as a by-product be exploited for its energy-generation potential.

Jason Gifford, spokesperson for the Energy Division of WEC Projects, a firm which is implementing South Africa’s first biogas-to-power plant at a municipal wastewater treatment works, explains that biogas produced during the sewage treatment process has the potential to reduce the plant’s dependence on the national electricity grid.

“Biogas can be used to fuel gas engine generators at treatment works and provide a percentage of the electricity these plants use for operation,” he explains.

Considering that there are around 50 major municipalities in South Africa with a wastewater treatment plant large enough to operate an effective biogas plant, 30 MW is a conserva- tive estimate of the possible electricity saving.

Treatment plants traditionally use a natural process, known as anaerobic digestion, which involves the decomposition of organic matter in the absence of oxygen, to convert a large proportion of the solid sewage sludge, produced in the mainstream treatment processes, into biogas.

Following anaerobic digestion, the biogas produced is termed raw fuel, as it contains water, hydrogen sulphide as well as a variety of volatile organic and chemical compounds that can damage the moving parts in engines.

“For biogas to be an effective fuel, it therefore needs to be conditioned and have these contami- nants removed to ensure long-term sustainability of the plant engine and a lower overall running cost,” says Gifford.

A biogas-to-power plant may provide wastewater treatment works with an on-site energy source that could enable it to offset a portion of its running costs.

Critically, Gifford emphasises that, as the mandate of municipal water works is not to generate electricity, but to clean wastewater, it is important to outsource the running of biogas- to-power plants to specialised contractors.

“In certain international cases, the function of biogas-to-energy operations at water works has exceeded the initial mandate of cleaning effluent and has become the primary focus of the entire plant, resulting in a deterioration of the quality of the treated effluent,” he notes.

Gifford adds that the true financial benefit of municipal biogas plants is evident when savings are not lost to other divisions within the municipality, but reinvested into the effluent treatment works for maintenance and upgrade.

In addition, he says, the cost of a fully commissioned biogas-to-power operation, including full automation and remote monitoring, can be recouped after four to seven years, making it a financially viable long-term energy option.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Energy News
The retail price of 95-grade petrol in South Africa will drop by 93c/ℓ or 8.3% from next Wednesday, while wholesale diesel price will decrease by 9.9%, the government said on Friday. Petrol will now cost R10.31 (nearly $1) a litre while the new wholesale diesel price...
South African generator set (genset) designer and manufacturer Diesel Electric Services (DES), has contracted a permanent, high-pressure gas connection that would allow it to test natural gas-powered engines with greater flexibility. The connection would give DES...
Commenting in his capacity as chairperson of the Presidential Infrastructure Championing Initiative (PICI), President Jacob Zuma this week provided an update on the progress of several cross-border and regional infastructure projects championed by the heads-of-State...
More
 
 
Latest News
SAA acting CEO Nico Bezuidenhout, Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni
Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene has assured that loss-making national carrier South African Airlines (SAA) will not receive another bailout from government, noting that the most recent R6.4-billion government guarantee had only been provided in support of an intensive...
South Africa's cumulative trade deficit was R95.3-billion in 2014, the South African Revenue Service (Sars) said on Friday. In 2013, it was R71.4-billion, Sars said in a statement.
Certain regulatory approvals remain outstanding in Telkom’s proposed R2.67-billion takeover of JSE-listed Business Connexion (BCX), the parties said in an update to shareholders on Friday. BCX noted in the statement that the Competition Authority of Botswana had...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
The international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope – which is to be jointly hosted by South Africa and Australia with, later, outstations in other countries – may not yet exist, but international scientific working groups are already deciding what...
A free Web-based solar power plant capacity-planning tool offers project planners and developers, as well as governments, a means to assess the solar energy potential of thin-film solar PV power over an area of land. The tool was developed by thin-film solar...
As yet, no specific methodology, timeline or costs have been finalised to remedy the water ingress, excessive to contractual specifications, into the Gautrain tunnel between emergency shaft two (E2) and Park Station, says Bombela Concession Company technical and...
ASTRAPAK The group highlighted that executive strategic interventions and other group-wide business improvement imperatives were progressing favourably
The “seriously disruptive” electricity outages in South Africa have cost packaging group Astrapak more than R2-million in “irrecoverable downtime costs”, the company said on Monday, adding that the power cuts were negating some of the benefit of energy saving...
Bakkies and more affordable cars dominated South Africa’s new vehicle market in 2014. Unaudited data from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) shows that South Africa’s most popular vehicle in 2014 was the Toyota Hilux, selling 37 562 units.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks