01 February 2015 | Online since 2003



AD Conference focuses on optimising plant productivity


‘Building an AD plant is just the start of operating a productive and profitable facility’ was a key message to delegates from all sectors of the industry who attended FM BioEnergy’s recent ‘Healthy Bacteria, Healthy Profits’ conference in Birmingham.

“Sustainability is the key to the future success of the AD sector, both in economic and ecological terms, but to achieve that we have to optimise plant operation and efficiency. That requires a high level of technical expertise at every stage,” Frank Thomson, Conference Chairman and Managing Director of FM BioEnergy, the Renewable Energy Division of BOCM PAULS, told the 200-strong audience.

“The AD industry has, to date, focused heavily on renewable initiatives, planning and permitting, feedstock contracts, financials, together with plant design and construction,” Tim Elsome, FM BioEnergy’s Business Development Manager explained. “But it has often underestimated the input required to successfully commission plants and the ongoing technical expertise to achieve optimum output.


“Most plants take three months from first feed to maximum output, but once at 60%-70% output many start to stall because operators have insufficient technical knowledge to optimise the process. Given the high level of investment involved, this shortfall from the theoretical design potential represents a big loss of income. For a 1 mW facility which operates at 70% efficiency it can amount to £1000 per day in lost heat, energy or gate fees.

“Getting a plant to optimum efficiency in four weeks and generating income fast has to be the priority. That sounds simple but is actually very difficult to achieve. FM BioEnergy’s Accelerated Commissioning Service enables an AD plant to be fully commissioned in the optimal time, with 70% achieving full gas output in 14 days. In a 1mW plant, reducing the commissioning time from 90 days to 28 days produces a total financial benefit of £100,000, based on an electricity price of 14p/kWh.”


Dr Thomas Fritz of Schaumann BioEnergy, the German market leader in biogas optimisation and process efficiency, revealed: “Over 80% of waste digesters in Germany operate at less than their design potential. A common problem is acidification caused by process interruption. In most cases this is caused by imbalance between the macro and micro nutrients in the plant.

“Trace elements in AD plants vary because feedstocks are different and biogas efficiency is limited by the nutrient in shortest supply, resulting in low gas yields and process failures. Schaumann BioEnergy analyse, evaluate and calculate trace element requirements for each individual AD plant and produce a bespoke product to meet those requirements. Once it has been applied we retest and recalculate to ensure optimum results.”

Neil McInnes, General Manager of Feeds Marketing, which manages over 900,000 tonnes of food and beverage co-products, plus organic wastes, annually in the UK, told the audience:

“The UK AD industry has reached the stage where demand for feedstock material is increasing rapidly. Competition for these products is intensifying as additional AD plants come on stream. With significant extra capacity in the pipeline the annual shortfall in supplies is forecast to reach 800,000 tonnes. As an industry, we must therefore optimise the efficiency with which they are used. FM BioEnergy is increasingly regarded as a one-stop shop for AD operators, because we have the expertise to assist them with sourcing feedstocks and can supply throughout the UK on a short- or long-term basis.”

FM BioEnergy is the Renewable Energy Division of BOCM PAULS. The leading specialist in AD nutrition and plant optimisation, FM BioEnergy works closely with its partner, Schaumann BioEnergy, to ensure that best use is made of these valuable resources. Providing a full and service to operators of biogas plants at all stages, from development through to construction, commissioning and ongoing operation, the company helps them to gain more control over the process, improve methane yields and maximise return on investment.

Download



Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


9 January 2015
Care Assistant - Bank
Beacon Farm Care Home. Beacon Farm Lodge Care Home is an integral part of Cramlington. Beacon Farm Care Home is a 43 bed care...

9 January 2015
Managed Mobility Specialist
Ability to develop account plans and strategies to hunt and farm business opportunities. O2 & Telefónica....

9 January 2015
Nursery Assistant Required.
Great Wood Farm Early Years Centre. Full or part time nursery assistant required....

9 January 2015
Commercial Property Solicitor
The Commercial Property Solicitor will deal with a varied caseload of real estate along with agriculture matters including th...

19 January 2015
Butcher
We are a family run farm and have an on-farm Butchers Shop selling only our own Beef, Pork and Lamb direct to the customer......




Top stories you may have missed
12 November 2014 | Arable
GM crops 'good for farmers and the envir...

GM crops 'good for farmers and the envir...

GM crops are good for the economy and can reduce the amount of pesticides u...


6 November 2014 | Cattle
Smaller European markets drive beef expo...

Smaller European markets drive beef expo...

Demand from smaller European markets has helped drive strong growth for UK ...


6 November 2014 | Agri Safety
Lack of engineers a 'ticking time bomb' ...

Lack of engineers a 'ticking time bomb' ...

A lack of engineers, not enough people promoting the land-based industries ...


4 November 2014 | Bees and Beekeeping
Bee action plan due: Last chance for bee...

Bee action plan due: Last chance for bee...

Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss is launching the National Pollinator ...


4 November 2014 | Arable
Experts welcome financial boost for youn...

Experts welcome financial boost for youn...

Agricultural specialists have welcomed a potential financial boost for youn...


3 November 2014 | News
Supermarket competition on prices 'risks...

Supermarket competition on prices 'risks...

As retailers continue to participate in a highly competitive race to the bo...


31 October 2014 | Arable
New Defra farm figures 'underline volati...

New Defra farm figures 'underline volati...

New farm business income data from Defra, which focus on income from March ...


30 October 2014 | Agri Safety
Agriculture remains one of UK's most dan...

Agriculture remains one of UK's most dan...

Agriculture has remained one of the industries in which workers are most li...


29 October 2014 | Finance
UK farmland prices see 'substantial grow...

UK farmland prices see 'substantial grow...

Prime arable land in the UK has seen a substantial year-on-year growth in p...


27 October 2014 | Arable
Satellites to help farmers pinpoint dise...

Satellites to help farmers pinpoint dise...

A new mobile app for farmers able to pinpoint and identify disease, pests a...